At 54, he has overcome cancer and the loss of half a lung — now Santiago Lange is proving once again that nothing can stop him after winning Olympic gold at Rio 2016. The Argentine, along with sailing partner Cecilia Carranza Saroli, took top spot in the Nacra 17 Mixed Multihull after a dramatic final medal race on Tuesday.
The victory caps a difficult year for the oldest sailing competitor at the Games, whose two sons are also representing their country in the 49-er skiff class. Yago and Klaus both swam out to meet Lange, clambering onto the boat to celebrate with their father — who was clearly touched by the emotion.
After being diagnosed with cancer last year, he used the motivation of his past five Olympic appearances and two bronze medals to ensure he would be ready for the first Olympics to be staged in South America.
“The six months I was dealing with that, I was so positive,” Lange told reporters.
“Now when I look back it was a good experience, difficult, but I learned a lot. I was operated on in Barcelona and after five days I was cycling; in just a month I was back sailing.
“This may help to give strength to many people who are going through what I’ve been through. But I prefer to focus on what we did athletically. The disease has nothing to do with it… it was a stone in the road.” – CNN Report.
We congratulate Santiago Lange for his positive spirit and for winning the Olympic honours. May he live long happily and peacefully!