Starlight’s group trip to this year’s Monaco Grand Prix gave Ben, Isaac, Scott and Ryan a weekend of incredible experiences that they will never forget, flying home with new-found friends and memories to cherish.
Thank you to everyone involved. I watched the boy’s amazement everyday and it made me feel so happy… amazing from start to finish. No money in the world could buy what Starlight gave us. (Ryan and Scott’s dad James)
The trip gave the opportunity for the families to escape the routine and reality of hospital treatment with others who have shared similar experiences. Nine-year-old Ben’s dad Mark commented on how his confidence grew as the trip went on. After 10 months of intense hospital treatment for Leukemia, Mark noticed how “Ben has come out of his shell and we have got the old Ben back. I have never seen him smile so much.”
The trip was also particularly special for Formula 1-mad Isaac, who after three and a half years, had his last day of Leukaemia treatment the day he flew to Monaco. As Simon, Isaac’s dad explains: “It culminated perfectly with him finishing treatment on the day we flew so it was a weekend he’s been waiting for, for so long!… There were times where it was just so surreal that no words could be used to explain exactly what Isaac was experiencing. A very, very special ‘money-can’t-buy’ experience that I’m sure we’ll be talking about for many years.”
The trip started in style with a (very fast and windswept!) speedboat trip across the bay to the Red Bull Energy station where the group got to take in the incredible surroundings, including splashing passers-by at the outdoor pool! They met and chatted to the entire team at Red Bull and Toro Rosso and even tried their hand at presenting with the Sky Sports team!
Next it was onto a whirlwind tour of the pit lanes, where the group got chance to get up close to the action. Highlights included sitting down in the Mercedes garage with Lewis Hamilton and Valterri Bottas, testing Sebastian Vettel’s steering wheel over at Ferrari and watching McLaren’s Carlos Sainz and Lando Norris as they raced the Monaco circuit on a games console! The natural born racers then showed off their talents, and made some serious noise, revving the engine of the safety car!
On Saturday the group watched the qualifying race from the incredible Williams motorhome, before seeing Lewis Hamilton race to victory up close from the Grandstand on Sunday.
We cannot thank the teams, drivers, Sky Sports and the entire F1 community enough for their amazing generosity, helping us to create memories the families will never forget.
Our groups trips would not be possible without our supporters’ continued generosity, find out more about how you can help fund once-in-a-lifetime experiences for more families here.