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Paralympics The power of sport and participation

The Summer Olympics in Tokyo is not over yet. But we’re also close to the finish line of the Paralympic Games, the equivalent of the Olympic Games for athletes with physical disabilities, which will end on September 5 with the closing ceremony.
There were 22 sports champions, and 4,400 athletes participated in 539 titles. Italy often waves with its tricolor atop the podium and is currently ninth in the medal table: at 48, with 12 gold, 19 silver and 17 bronze.
On August 8, the curtain also fell on the Olympics, the most unique and bizarre Olympic Games since they lacked a key element: the audience in the stands, as a result of the pandemic emergency. Athletes would have liked to compete in front of the masses, this was not possible, but there were certainly no “gatherings” of passion and pure joy, albeit at a distance, the Azores gave us a historical and unexpected record:

The Summer Olympics in Tokyo is not over yet. But we’re also close to the finish line of the Paralympic Games, the equivalent of the Olympic Games for athletes with physical disabilities, which will end on September 5 with the closing ceremony.

22 sports champions, 4,400 participating athletes, 539 titles.

Italy flies its flag on top of the podium and is currently ninth in the medal table: 48th, with 12 gold, 19 silver and 17 bronze.

But let’s go back to the wonders of the present: since tennis player Naomi Osaka lit the Olympic censer on July 23, there hasn’t been a day when Italy didn’t win at least one medal. His ascent on Olympus began on Saturday, July 24, Vito Dell’Aquila’s Taekwondo Gold Day, ending with the magnificent Butterflies of Rhythmic Gymnastics on August 8, the day of the closing ceremony. In between, a string of victories that celebrate willpower and talent: surely the greatest achievement has been the achievement of Marcel Jacobs, who is able to win gold in the most followed and most important of all disciplines: the men’s 100m flat. The world’s fastest man doubled the Olympic gold medal also in the 4×100 discipline along with his teammates: Lorenzo Bata, Filippo Torto and Fausto Disalo. They were not even in the most optimistic predictions: champion in the fastest race and gold in 4×100, previous victories in the United States and Jamaica. To raise the titles won in athletics to five, there is a woman: Paulian Antonella Palmisano who, along with Massimo Stano’s gold in the 20-kilometer walk, brought the tri-color athletics to the top notch on the podium, despite the British. And the Americans. There were also medals from weightlifting, a sport that Italy had not won for a long time; While wrestling, judo and archery confirmed her contribution, so did cycling as the men’s track chasing team led by Filippo Gana returned to victory after 61 years. But that’s not all, Gianmarco Tampere in the high jump, Luigi Bossa in karate, Caterina Panti and Ruggiero Tita in sailing and the perseverance of gymnast Vanessa Ferrari contributed so powerfully to this magical exploit that Kony boss Giovanni Malaghi rejoiced: “It’s the greatest Olympic ever, I am proud of this wonderful team that gave Italy another great happiness, after the European Football Championship, giving strong feelings to our country and to all Italians who suffered from Covid.” So in the TV Olympics that we didn’t wait for much, and in which we didn’t hope for much, but wanted at all costs, came a barrage of medals to revive us and lift our spirits, after Wembley’s successes: this is still a transformation in the power of the sport, bolstered by participation and team spirit.

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Fabiana Bruni