Blind skier and Beijing Olympics gold medalist made her dream come true! She drove the iconic Porsche 911

Paralympian Alexandra Rex from Záhorie began skiing when she was just five years old. Though she has only recently reached adulthood, she's already achieved notable success. At the Beijing Olympics, she clinched gold in the super-G and a bronze in the slalom. Further establishing her elite status, Alexandra also secured the grand crystal globe in the overall World Cup championship.

At a young age, the up-and-coming Paralympic skier was diagnosed with Stargardt's disease, a hereditary eye condition that causes loss of central vision. As a result, Alexandra has to use magnifying glasses, which assist her in reading and in everyday life. Despite her disability, she successfully studies at Ján Papánka Gymnasium in the capital city. She dedicates all her free time to studying and sports. Thanks to her incredible determination and love for sports, she ranks among our best Paralympians.

At first glance, it might seem that Alexandra has already achieved her greatest dreams at such a young age. Some of these dreams seemed so distant that she never imagined they would become reality. Due to her disability, driving a car isn't possible for her. When skiing, she depends entirely on her navigator. Similarly, the concept of controlled driving in a safe environment emerged, paving the way for the Slovak athlete's secret wish to materialize.

Help and support in the realization of this project was offered by the importer and dealer of Porsche vehicles in Slovakia, Porsche Inter Auto, s.r.o.  "Alexandra Rex's story – her determination, resilience, and thirst for victory – deeply resonated with us. It serves as an inspiration, showing that one can overcome adversity and obstacles. Furthermore, we were genuinely thrilled that her ultimate dream was to drive a 911. It's clear that Alexandra doesn't set small challenges for herself," Ing. Gabriela Černáková, the marketing and PR manager at Porsche Inter Auto Slovakia, said.

While everything came together swiftly, the preparations were both thorough and extensive. It was necessary to obtain permissions, find a suitable airport, and coordinate the schedule for all members of the implementation team. Eventually, by the end of the summer in August, a group of enthusiasts came together, all driven by the shared goal of fulfilling the elite athlete's lifelong dream. At Dobrá Niva Airport near Zvolen, a beautiful collaboration was formed between Porsche Inter Auto Slovakia and PR & media consulting company REXA & ROMAN PARTNERS, which is also the official sponsor of Alexandra Rexová and the REXA para skiing team. In cooperation with Dobrá Niva Airport, they managed to organize a wonderful experience and fulfill what might seem like an impossible wish at first glance.

Dobrá Niva airport near Zvolen became the scene of a big surprise

The surprise for Alexandra took place on the occasion of Alexandra's 18th birthday. The unsuspecting celebrant was driven by a crew from Bratislava to the Dobrá Niva airport, which was exclusively reserved for the day's special event. Upon arrival, a shiny Porsche 911 in the GTS version was waiting on the runway. "I’ve passed many miles in cars, moving around for training, races and training camps. But I've never driven before and I've always wanted to give it a try," revealed a surprised Alexandra.

She enjoyed her initial rides in the passenger seat to get to know the car and enjoyed the wonderful sound of the engine and the wind in her hair, as it was a convertible version. "Being a skier I like speed, so I compete in downhill and speed races. In Beijing, during the super-G, I reached speeds of up to 115 kilometres per hour," the Slovakian Paralympian talked about her passion.

During the test drive, Alexandra was accompanied by her co-driver and coach, Marek Neuwirth, Porsche's Brand Manager in Slovakia. Marek didn't spare Alexandra at all and gave her a feel of what lies under the hood of the Porsche Carrera 911 GTS. "My stomach felt like it was on a roller coaster and my hair was flying like crazy," Alexandra confessed after the test drive. And indeed, it was no wonder she was hurtling along at 180 kilometres per hour.

After the test ride, the eagerly anticipated moment arrived when Alexandra took the driver's seat. On a closed track, under the supervision of the crew and Marek Neuwirth, Alexandra experienced something she had long secretly dreamt of. The 18-year-old skier finally held the steering wheel of a Porsche Carrera 911 GTS with 480 horse powers. That's when the dream drive began!

Her driving stunned the entire crew. Alexandra is used to skiing precisely according to her navigator's instructions, and this was evident in her driving. She was very disciplined and followed Marek's instructions precisely. Just like her slope runs, this first-ever drive behind the wheel was absolutely precise and full of energy. "I can go one more time," was the first sentence as she parked by the crew. Once her initial emotions settled, she surprisingly admitted: "It's better than skiing."  Of course, she said this with a smile on her lips, adding that the car's thrust pleasantly surprised her, especially how it pushed her back into the seat. However, no one knows the exact speed they reached on the straightaway. "It was so emotional and fast that I didn't even notice how quickly we were going," added an enthusiastic co-driver and Porsche Brand Manager, Marek Neuwirth. He further stated that Alexandra is a perfect driver. Despite her blurry vision on the steering wheel, she enjoyed the drive and certainly didn't spare the engine of this iconic vehicle. Upon returning to the start, she was quite shaken. "Thank you. I feel like the word 'thank you' is inadequate, but really, a sincere big thank you," she added, saying it felt similar to when she won the gold medal at the Paralympics in Beijing and was left speechless."

"It's a dream come true. But the emotions, they are still indescribable," the young athlete further confessed. But her day full of surprises was not over. Her journey home was cut short by a ride on a private jet. By then, even the seasoned skier was left speechless by the rush of emotions and gave a heartfelt hug to everyone around her. “The plane will take you from Zvolen to Nitra, and from there you'll continue by car all the way home," revealed Lucián Rexa from the PR & consulting firm REXA & ROMAN PARTNERS. This ride was made possible also thanks to the support of Marián Dada, the co-owner of Dobrá Niva airport. The roar of the 480 horsepower Porsche Carrera 911 GTS was suddenly replaced by the sound of the propeller on a small aircraft, which headed to Nitra with our Olympic champion onboard, where a ride home awaited her.

There are no limits, when you believe in yourself you can do amazing things

These are the typical words of the young skier and members of her private para-skiing team REXA. Despite her disability, Alexandra has risen to the top of Slovak and world para-skiers. Yet she always says she's just at the beginning of what's possible. If you were looking for a synonym for the word 'determination', just watch a regular training session of a para-athlete. The commitment and strength of para-athletes send shivers down your spine. And none of them seek pity. Alexandra often says that it doesn't matter if she's having a bad day or if her legs hurt from the previous training; one simply needs to keep progressing and not lament about life. From a young age, she understood that discipline and perseverance are what take her from point A to point B. Determination, discipline, and responsibility are what drive her forward. “Perhaps some disabled child, who watched me during my last training, could be my future self, trying to find inspiration. You never know who you might inspire and which moment will change your life forever,” Alexandra said.

Porsche's iconic car has taught generations to dream

The Porsche 911 celebrates its 60th anniversary this year since it went on sale. At the same time, Alexandra Rex is celebrating her 18th birthday and her big dream was to drive a Porsche 911. Bringing these two stories together was therefore offered as if on a silver platter.  Alexandra's story is also a powerful message for young people and future generations. “We hope that our video and the output from this surprise will inspire young people not to give up and believe in themselves. Not being afraid, having the courage to pursue one's dreams despite the disadvantages that we often face in life, that's the message we want to convey to everyone,” concluded Gabriela Černáková. These days, Alexandra is preparing for the upcoming championships with her team and coach on the snow-covered hills in Argentina, so that she can once again represent Slovakia in the winter and achieve admirable results.