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Federica Pellegrini: no one ever like her

Thanks, thanks and thanks again. Federica Pellegrini had already won even before entering the pool, with the conquest of the fifth Olympic final; she had already reached the highest podium in the world, making the story of her career an eternal legend.

By Gianfranco Gatta

The seventh place in the final is just a detail!

A career that sees her protagonist at only sixteen, Athens 2004, as the youngest blue on the individual Olympic podium; which sees her invincible with eleven world records: since 2009 she has held that of the 200 freestyle, in 1’52 "98.

Over the years she has had a decline due to panic attacks, so much so as to make her run away from the starting blocks; with character, tenacity and immense fortitude she was able to react, returning to grind victories and records.

Despite training in Verona, she was lucky enough to compete for the Aniene in Rome where she meets a sincere friend, Giovanni Malagò, President of the Club and of the Coni, who protects and supports her in all circumstances, like a true sportsman.

That luck that the young Benedetta Pilato lacked at the mercy of a Federation devoid of empathy, not allowing her coach Vito D'Onghia to follow her to Tokyo. Incomprehensible!

You are not a champion by chance: endowed with great intelligence and a lot of self-irony, Federica did not expect to get on the podium: “I'm not one to make fun of”, she said on the eve, “Tomorrow the medal department is closed for me, I don't get off, but it's not reachable for me right now. With age I have learned to set feasible, difficult, but feasible goals and without dreaming of the impossible. Tomorrow will be fun, it will be the last”.

Small lie because the last will be at the Naples Meeting at the end of September, as she had declared in recent months.

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Un post condiviso da Federica Pellegrini (@kikkafede88)

On 5 August she will turn 33, twenty of which she spent in the swimming pool at a competitive level, fighting not only against her opponents but against all those hypocritical conventions that are part of human misery.

Like when in Rio she lost the podium for a split second and she publicly addressed the problem of her period. Open up heaven! She had broken a taboo for candid souls.

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Un post condiviso da Federica Pellegrini (@kikkafede88)

She fought the gossip that called her a man-eater, out of respect for her parents; she made a name for herself on television in the “Italia's Got Talent” program, thanks to her nice spontaneity and showing unsuspected hints of shyness.

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Un post condiviso da Federica Pellegrini (@kikkafede88)

The future is in her hands and with her talents she will be able to make gold whatever she decides to do, with the hope that she will remain in the world of sport as an example for many young people.

Thank you, thank you and thank you again!