A cycle through Durban for Duchenne muscular dystrophy

Jason sits in his chair as he his pulled by his father while they participate in the aQuelle Tour Race. Photo: Supplied

The Winslow family recently took part in the aQuelle Tour Durban 2018 Cycle Race to raise awareness for Duchenne muscular dystrophy.

Jason Winslow (11), suffers from the inherited genetic disorder which is a progressive muscular weakness, typically in boys. It is said that one in 5 000 newborn boys in the world is affected by the rare and fatal disease.

 

Christine, Jason and Brohnsonn Winslow with cyclist Rivers Braatvedt participated in the aQuelle Tour Race. Photo: Supplied

 

His parents, Christine and Brohnsonn, alongside cyclist, Rivers Braatvedt, rode the Durban roads with the aim of educating the public about this fatal disease. To prepare for the race, the family cycled the Cradle of Humankind on weekends.

With his wheelchair attached to his father’s bicycle, Jason was pulled for about 45km. They spent three days in Durban and participated in the race, not to raise funds but to bring awareness of the disease.

 

Christine, Jason and Brohnsonn Winslow reach the finish line with cyclist, Rivers Braatvedt at the aQuelle Tour Durban. Photo: Supplied

The Randburg Sun first wrote about Jason after Footprints Special Needs School, held a day in support of World Duchenne Awareness Day and released 53 red balloons to mark his need for the Exon skipping 53 drug.

The drug aims to restore production of the dystrophin protein (a protein that is said to be located primarily in muscles used for movement and in heart muscle). It improves motor ability as he is now wheelchair-bound because of the genetic disorder.

Christine explained that Jason is doing well and is handling his challenges with a positive attitude.

Jason’s experience of the race was one of pure enjoyment, “He thoroughly enjoyed the ride and didn’t stop talking the whole way. He loved waving to all the cyclists and supporters,” she added.

In October he will also take part in the Amashova Cycle Race, a 106km race from Pietermaritzburg to the Durban beachfront, as well as the Telkom 947 Cycle Challenge in November.

 

Cyclist, Rivers Braatvedt with Brohnsonn, Jason and Christine Winslow cycle through the Durban streets at the aQuelle Tour Race. Photo: Supplied

Christine said the race taught them that it does not matter if cyclists rode for varying charities, “They are all there to make a difference,” she said, adding they had cyclists from CHOC help push Jason’s chariot up the hills. “It was a great feeling to see how strangers out there come together and give support.”

 

Cyclist, Rivers Braatvedt with Brohnsonn, Christine and Jason Winslow at the aQuelle Tour Race where they cycled to raise awareness for Duchenne muscular dystrophy. Photo: Supplied

The family’s hope is to get boys with Duchenne to take part in cycling and show people that there’s always a way. “Never give up,” concluded Christine.

ALSO READ: 53 red balloons for Duchenne muscular dystrophy 

  AUTHOR
Neo Phashe
Journalist

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