Italia Team launches “Destinazione PyeongChang 2018”. The President of CONI, Giovanni Malagò and the Deputy Secretary General and Head of Mission of the Italia Team, Carlo Mornati, have presented at the Museion – Contemporary and Modern Art Museum- in Bolzano the initiatives for the forthcoming Olympic Games to be staged in South Korea on 9-25 February 2018. The athletes who are members of the Olympic Club took part in the press conference, together with the presidents of the two Federations involved, Flavio Roda for the FISI (Italian Winter Sports Federation) and Andrea Gios for the FISG (Italian Ice Sports Federation).
CONI President Giovanni Malagò opened with an introduction speech.
“Carlo has history, style and preparation. He embodies a major profile, setting an example that makes other countries envy us. A great athlete does not necessarily become a great executive, but I think that, if you have become a champion and you put yourself in a position to understand how some things work, you can go far. He is going to be our guide in the PyeongChang expedition. I think that Winter Games these days are considered to be increasingly appealing to young people, sponsors, TV – and, for this reason, I would like to thank Discovery, which invested in the product – as it understood, in the best possible way, the process of change that also affects the Olympics programme.
I would like to thank the Presidents of FISI and FISG, Roda and Gios, for the Federations’ efforts and, of course, the athletes, who represent the best of our image. We are proud of our movement: there is no country like ours, with 384 disciplines. This is our history. We have around 10 months left before the Games. I am happy for today in Bolzano because we owe a lot to this area that has given us so much. I would like to thank Innerhofer, my first medal-holder as President of CONI, and all the winners of the previous Games that are here today. We will do better than Sochi, where something went wrong and the rest was bad luck. My thoughts go to Zoeggeler who is candidate at IOC as an athlete representative member.
In conclusion, I would like to say that I have seen some extraordinary EA7 uniforms: Italia Team will be envied by all, it is surely going to win in terms of style. These Olympics are going to go down in history, thanks to our colours.”
Carlo Mornati went into detail. “We have come a long way for 2018, having worked with two federations that have alone covered 102 Olympic Games. A unique case in the world, they are the first and fourth top federations by number of events. Flavio Roda and Andrea Gios are men with an experience and, thanks to them, we managed to do a good job. Although their headquarters are in Milan, they were very good at figuring out change on a central level. CONI provides assistance, scientific support, synergies and resources: both Federations received €37.9 million in funding from 2014 to 2017, not to mention the €276,000-worth of activities funded in 2015-2016 and around €2 million between Olympic Club and Olympic promises: we have covered almost one hundred athletes, a number that almost matches the whole expedition to the Games, if we consider the previous ones.
We do not want to live the experience every four years: there is constant relationship of exchange with the Club project that needs to last permanently. PyeongChang should be easy to live in because everything is very compact. There are six novelties in the programme compared with Sochi and there are going to be two clusters of reference where the Games will take place. We have organised everything so as to meet every need in a functional way. Casa Italia will be a very welcoming centre for the athletes. From Seoul, we will travel to the villages by train for security reasons. I am sure we will do well in PyeongChang, but I would like to recall a figure that serves a useful point of reference.
For the record, Sochi was the sixth Olympics by number of medals won and came 22nd in final place, in the medal collection, which notably lacking in gold. The average medals won by Italy, in the history of the Olympics, is five. Five like the edition in double figures: Albertville and Lillehammer, however, took place 2 years apart and benefitted from the same generation of prodigies. We will go to Korea with ambition and conviction”.
Danilo di Tommaso, CONI Head of Communications, showed the athletes Article 48 of the Olympic Charter and informed the journalists present that “no media representative can enter the athletes’ residential area. There are only two exceptions, on the 6 and 8 February, when the IOC will organise a tour of the Olympic Village. Otherwise, every day two hundred accredited journalists will be granted access to the central area of the Village”. Di Tommaso also presented the new website, pyeongchang2018.coni.it, launched today in both Italian and English; he then introduced Luigi Ecuba, Senior Director of Sports Discovery Networks in Southern Europe. Discovery has indeed obtained the rights for the Summer and Winter Olympic Games from 1 January 2017 to 31 December 2024.
“We hope our collaboration will also last beyond 2024. Discovery’s trademark is more about storytelling, that is, telling what lies behind the live Olympics’ event. Our story is based on training, sacrifice, the story of the athletes up until the event, which is not just a sports event, but of pathos and belonging. For Eurosport Discovery, we are redefining the Olympic Games, making them available on various screens, from TVs to smartphones. For this redefinition of the Olympics, for the first time, in PyeongChang, Eurosport Italia will be completely independent from Eurosport International and, as of the autumn, we are going to tell the story of sacrifice that lies behind a victory or disappointment”.
Diego Nepi, Italia Team Marketing Director, highlighted the meaning and concept of Casa Italia for the Winter Games. “It has given us the willingness and the passion that only sports and your accomplishments could give us. We returned from Rio very excited and satisfied. In Italy, we encountered difficult situation due to the earthquake. Since the season reopened, your victories have rekindled the flame. You are at the centre of our project, not only because of the results but also thanks to your sacrifice and the example you set every day. Casa Italia will be the centre of emotions, we are going to give life – together with Discovery – to what lies behind the result. It is not just an area for hospitality but also for communication. There will be no rules at the centre, only our DNA. It is very important to me to grow our value thanks to our sponsors, our partners and those who support and believe in the Italia Team”.
Malagò, before concluding and giving the kits to the Olympic Club athletes, reminded that “at the next Board meeting, if I am still President, we are going to win the same level of medals as those won by our Summer Games colleagues. From October to January, according to our schedule, we will attend the ceremony at the Quirinal Palace where we will be handed the Italian flag”.
Peter Fill and Sofia Goggia expressed their ambition and hope for the Italia Team, bringing the day to a satisfying close with the claim “Incredible is not impossible. Fire on the Ice”, which will be the Italia Team’s slogan ahead of the XXIII Olympic Winter Games.
WINTER OLYMPIC CLUB 2017 – 39 ATLETHES
Ludwig Rieder Luge
Giuliano Razzoli Alpine Skiing
Lisa Vittozzi Biathlon
Dietmar Noeckler Cross country Skiing
Lukas Runggaldier Nordic Combined
Raffaella Brutto Snowboard
Nicola Tumolero Speed Skating
Anna Cappellini Figure Skating
Arianna Fontana Short Track