|Frontrunners Rhode Island|
The Gay Games is an international sporting event held every four years that serves to encourage healthy competition among LGBTQ athletes from all over the world. Paris served as this year's host city and was attended by over 10,000 athletes from 90 countries with over 300,000 spectators.
Five our very own runners together with their families/partners participated in the various running and cultural events across Paris from 8/4/18 - 8/12/18. Our proud runners included Keith Shields, Brian Mulligan, John Kershaw , Scott Mirani and Tim Engels. They were joined by Jeff Fuller, Ed Pendola, Emma Kershaw, Peter Quesnel and Tom Koch.
This was certainly not the first time that FRRI members have participated in the Gay Games. Previous participants have included John Rocabello, Brian Mulligan (2002 Sydney Gay Games ) and Jim Saunders (2014 Cleveland Gay Games).
The opening ceremonies took place in the beautiful Jean Bouin Stadium, located in the 16th district of Paris. Every represented country and US state entered the stadium with their respective banners. Representing Rhode Island, Frontrunners RI was joined by the Newport Rowers, an LGBT rowing team. The ceremony included empowering speeches on sports and LGBT equality in addition to wonderful musical presentations promoting French culture and musical history.
Our runners did well despite the unseasonably warm temperature. Congratulations to Brian Mulligan for winning two medals!! Below are some photos of the various races. You may also read all about Keith Shield's experience in the half marathon.
10 K (held at Bois de Vincennes )
1. Tim Engels
2. Keith Shields
3. Scott Mirani
4. Brian Mulligan (SILVER medal winner in age group)*
* being challenged. According to official race results, Brian should be receiving gold medal.
Half Marathon (start and finish close to Arch de Triomphe)
1. Keith Shields
2. John Kershaw
Marathon (start and finish close to Arch de Triomphe)
Brian Mulligan (SILVER medal winner in age group)
Between events, the gang had the opportunity to take on many of the endless museums and historical sights. These included the Palace of Versailles, Notre-Dame de Paris Cathedral, Musee d'Orsay, Louvre Museum, Centre Pompidou, Musee Picasso and others! Of course, time was seen enjoying some fabulous meals and sights at the Marias! They also got to socialize with many frontrunners from all over the world during a big social gathering in the gay district of Paris.
Given the success of this year's big trip, many of us have already spoken about attending the Hong Kong Gay Games in November 2022.
Mark it in your calendar folks! You won't regret it!!!
VIDEO for 2022