“I’m extremely excited for the forthcoming European Athletics Championships which will take place in Rome next June. Rome is my favourite Italian city. I had my first international competition in 2009 in Italy, in Bressanone. It’s always very interesting to travel abroad and see new places, but the atmosphere you feel when competitions are scheduled in your own country, it’s matchless. We are looking forward to racing in front of our supporters, I have been waiting for this moment for a very long time. We are very loaded and happy”.

These are the words of Anna Bongiorni, who last summer shared the captain’s lines with the Italian Champion Gianmarco Tamberi, leading the Italian team to the conquest of the first historical European Cup, in Poland. Now the Italians athletes are training with great enthusiasm for this unmissable appointment, scheduled at the Olympic Stadium and Foro Italico Park from 7 to 12 June.

After the European bronze medal in women’s 4×100 relay, won in Munich in 2022, and the fourth place gained at the World Championships in Budapest, Bongiorni and her teammates want to celebrate the success again, in front of their home-fans. “We have worked very hard in the past years and the results obtained have repaid our efforts” says the Italian veteran. Although the bronze medal won in Munich was unexpected, today we have even more ambition. This will be a very important year. We are focused on Paris for the forthcoming Olympic Games, but the European Championship in our country are not less, having the sustenance of our supporters we will run faster, for sure. We will continue to work on us. The more we improve individually, the more the relay will progress”.

From Rome to Paris via Bahamas, where the World Relays will be held, intense months are approaching for the Italian relay athletes. “Considering the qualification system for the 2024 Olympic Games, we still do not have the pass, despite the excellent time done in Budapest last year. In early May, we have a great opportunity at the World Relay Championships in Bahamas. We must achieve the result. It will be important to get the qualification. We cannot allow ourselves any mistakes,” Bongiorni explains.

Referring to the success obtained in Chorzow, Anna says: “winning the European Cup with the Italian team was one of the greatest satisfactions of my career”. Although I don’t feel that old, I have a lot of experience in relays, and I know how to team up. My race didn’t go very well, so I had an extra incentive to motivate my teammates.

Tamberi and I make a very good team, we have worked hard to support the youth and the senior teams. We cheer each other on, and we are happy for the satisfactions and the results we reach as a team,” concludes Bongiorni.