Three, the Perfect Number
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Three, the Perfect Number

ELEONORA GIORGI, WALKING CHAMPION AND BOCCONI ALUM, WILL COMPETE IN HER THIRD OLYMPICS IN TOKYO. SHE ALREADY WON A BRONZE AT THE 2019 WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS, BUT THE HUNT FOR A GREAT PERFORMANCE AND ANOTHER MEDAL CONTINUES

When you ask an athlete at the beginning of their career what their sporting dream is, in most cases he will answer "participate in the Olympics". Not win, or stand on the podium, just participate. Because the Olympics are that mix of sporting event at the highest level and human experience that make just having been there unforgettable. However, if you are in your third Olympics, a goal that few athletes reach, then sporting ambitions grow in importance. Because the first Olympics are those of the "child's dream come true", the second those of the central phase of a career, and the third, in most cases, come in a period of technical and competitive maturity, the crowning of a successful career and the opportunity to make your mark.
Eleonora Giorgi, 31, will have this opportunity on Friday 6 August when, in the heat of the Japanese summer, the 20 km walk will start in Sapporo, a challenge with herself even before her opponents. "That event was love at first sight,” Eleonora says in an interview with ViaSarfatti25, “but after severe tendonitis, it was also a choice dictated by the need to find a discipline that was less traumatic for the ankles”. Eleonora graduated from Bocconi with a Bachelor in business administration and management and a Master in economics and management of public administrations and international institutions, so she faces many challenges such as university exams. For her, no injury  could have been more fortunate, in a sense:. “I am very rational. During the races I think of many things that I don't even remember and, in times of difficulty, I try to imagine the loved ones who encourage me ”.

Multiple Italian champion, bronze in the 50 km at the Doha World Championships in 2019, two Olympics behind her (London 2012 and Rio 2016), walking allowed her to reach top-level goals, mainly the result of hard work: "I'm not a natural talent for walking ", he says," my success is the result of hard work, daily training, sacrifices. Twenty kilometers every day, sometimes even more.” If she doesn’t win a medal (but why not?), as athletics is a truly universal discipline with the most nations and athletes participating , it will still be a success. And whichever way it goes, there may be another opportunity. Paris 2024 is not far off, and endurance disciplines are those in which age matters less. “For sure I approach this event with the same spirit I had in London, with the lightheartedness of someone who wants to enjoy the moment to the full. And with the awareness that three Olympics are a lot, the testimony of a long and always high-level career. Though I started late, my competitive age is still quite young,” says Eleonora. "I expect to be in Paris, and if I go to a fourth Olympics I would become part of a very small circle of athletes". In short, from the Thames to the Seine. But first, on August 6, in Sapporo ...
Good luck, Eleonora

by Davide Ripamonti
Translated by Richard Greenslade


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