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Final update before we start!

After months of preparation, fundraising, hard training and overcoming logistical challenges, FMO’s second participation in the Roparun is getting to its final stages. The lessons learned of last year have been implemented (such as no more bicycles on the roof of the bus). Friday, May 25, the FMO team consisting of  25 people (runners, cyclists, drivers, navigators, physiotherapists and logistic (including food and drink support) will leave for Paris. The team will make the road back (520 km) in about 46 hours and are expected to arrive in Rotterdam at between 12:30 and 15:00 hours on Monday, May 28. Obviously, we expect a big crowd of FMO colleagues to welcome the team at the Coolsingel. As it is unknown what the exact time of arrival will be at of the FMO team please follow them live on You will be able to find our expected arrival time on this website. It will take at least 30 minutes after the expected time that the team will be able to reach the finish line at the Coolsingel. You can follow us also on social media: on Twitter #roparun and #RRteam202, and on Facebook
Like this Facebook page and you will be kept updated of the FMO Roparun team experiences.

Friday, May 25 the team will leave FMO at around 14:00 hours and you are all invited to give them a good send off. Please join us after lunch at 13.30 hours at the entrance, a delicious surprise has been arranged for all FMO colleagues! The weather promises to be quite good for participants, although for the runners it might be a bit warm, only slight chance for rain and wind from the east.

The FMO team (#rrteam202) will start in Paris, near the airport of Le Bourget, at 14:38 hours on Saturday, May 25. The team is a mix of experienced participants of last year and a group of enthusiastic new comers. The runners have been divided in two groups of 4 runners, and each group is accompanied by 2 (or 3) cyclists and one driver and one navigator. Team Jan Willem consists of driver JW (who is going to watch how others will suffer this year) and navigator Martine van Aalst. The runners are: Caspar Havinga, Huub Cornelissen, both seasoned Ropa runners, Alex van Hout, anxious to make his debut and for the female touch Stephanie Leijten. They will be accompanied on the bicycle by Tanja van den Elsken (for whom it will be easy to find the way after the experience of last year), Arno van der Kruijs (for the day shift) and Eowyn Teekens (for the night shift).

The second team is the Greek team consisting of driver Evangelos Alamaniotis and navigator Manos Chatzopoulos. In their car only Greek music is allowed and no jokes on Greece are permitted. Teamcaptain Karin Bouwmeester is heading the team which furthermore consists of Nico Mensink (who sold the most boxes of wine), Robert Blom (who is in for a new challenge after completing the marathon of Rotterdam in 3:25) and Vincent van Aalst (former FMO employee and yes married with......and deliberately in the other team). Frederik van Pallandt went through the Ropa experience last year and will function as dark horse or spare runner. Cyclists are Walter van der Wees (the Roparun treasurer) and Laurens Jan Portegies the youngest kid of the pack.

Logistical support will be coordinated by our “manusje van alles” Willem van Leeuwen assisted by his MO colleague Didier Jorissen who replaced another team member at the last minute. The food and drinks will be supplied by HR in the person of Sabine Visser. Overall coordination from the Netherlands will be done by Kim van der Vat, who just in time returned from maternity leave.

The medical team was hired by Tanja and Willem in the persons of Peter Paul de Rotte (who still has to be a keeper in a hockey match on Monday afternoon but we do not expect him to see many balls) and Irene Schamper, from Rijswijk, for medical treatment and massage.

This year the team will be transported in a luxury bus provided by sponsor Vreugde Tours, who provided also two drivers: the experienced Henk Goos and the planner Andrew Stoets.

Logistics will be as follows: One team will start running for about 50- 55 km. The first team member runs a stretch of 1-2 km after which runner two takes over and so forth. A small bus will accompany the team to make the changes possible. Two bikers will accompany the runners, one in front and one at the back, for direction and safety purposes. After 50 km team number Two takes over and team number One takes a rest for 4-5 hours. The bus will make a base camp every 100 - 110 km, where the non running team will take a rest.

In total 325 teams will participate, more than 2,500 runners and 5,000 helpers. This year the Roparun will have a second start in Hamburg where 50 teams will begin their adventure. The teams start in Paris between 14:00 hours. Saturday afternoon until 6:30 hours Sunday morning. Hamburg starts somewhat earlier as they will run 565 km (half of it in the Netherlands, via Emmen, Almelo and Wageningen). All teams are expected to arrive at the Coolsingel between 12:00 and 18:00 hours Monday afternoon. As mentioned before, the progress of the team(s) can be followed at, or on twitter #roparun #RRteam202 and on Facebook
Like this Facebook page and you will be kept updated of the FMO Roparun team experiences.

In total every runner will run about 65 km and every biker will cycle about 200 km. So you can expect some pretty worn out people at the finish in Rotterdam who can do with some cheering up from their colleagues, family and friends. Please find attached a map of the Coolsingel and the spot where FMO family will gather to welcome the FMO Roparun team. We hope to see you all there !!

Last year all participants of the Roparun collected in total almost EUR 5 mln for people with cancer and the challenge for this year is to beat this number. The FMO team expects to contribute about EUR 12,000 for which we thank all of our sponsors, colleagues, friends and family, who contributed generously in all fundraising events. Donations are still welcome at