Dublin 2018: Carlotta Gilli the record-breaker08.08.2018
Italian teenager in stunning form as she heads into Euros
Italy’s Carlotta Gilli only made her senior international debut last year, but the S13 swimmer has become one of the stars of Para swimming during that time, heading to Dublin, Ireland, next week as one of the ones to watch at the World Para Swimming Allianz European Championships.
Still just 17 years old, Gilli’s first continental championship appearance will headline day three of the competition (15 August). The Italian has already shown her talent on the international stage, winning five gold medals at her first World Championships in Mexico last December.
“It was all great, I never imagined to win five gold medals at a World Championships and set world records. It was all a surprise,” Gilli said.
“The European Championships are the most important competition of my season and I have been working towards being at my best for these Championships. I am satisfied with my performances this season and my target for Dublin, like ever, is to just improve on my performances and do the best that I can.”
“It was a fantastic experience representing Italy in this kind of competition. My positions were very good on paper in many races, but it was my ﬁrst time in such an important competition, so it was very diﬃcult to do my best performances. Fortunately, the results arrived.
“Winning all these medals gave me the power to go home and start training again better than ever before with the aim to have better performances in the future,” she added.
World Series wins
Gilli has gone from strength to strength since her golden few days in Mexico, setting two world records and winning six gold medals at the two World Para Swimming World Series events she has competed at this year.
At her home World Series event in Lignano Sabbiadoro, Gilli won five medals from five events, including two golds. Last month, the Italian won four gold medals and set two world records at the series finale in Berlin, to head to Dublin as one of the in-form swimmers.
Gilli’s record breaking form has continued over recent weeks, with the 17-year-old setting new world records in both the 50m and 100m freestyle S13 in Rome, Italy, at the end of June. Gilli will compete in both events in Dublin as well as the 200m individual medley – an event she is also the world record holder in – and the 100m backstroke.
“My performances have definitely given me confidence and the power to carry on with my training with the aim to have even better performances in the future. I am going through the final stages of my training, but I know what I need to do. I am feeling in a normal way, but I don’t want to talk too early,” the five-time world champion said.
So Gilli has not set any specific medal targets but says her aim every time she competes is just to keep on improving.
“The European Championships are the most important competition of my season and I have been working towards being at my best for these Championships. I am satisfied with my performances this season and my target for Dublin, like ever, is to just improve on my performances and do the best that I can,” Gilli said.
Gilli will be one of 28 Italian swimmers competing in Dublin, the biggest team Italy has taken to a European Championships. Other notable names include Paralympic champion Francesco Bocciardo and 10-time European champion Federico Morlacchi.
The World Para Swimming Allianz European Championships will take place at the National Aquatic Centre in Dublin from August 13-19. Almost 400 Para swimmers from 37 countries are set to take part in Ireland’s biggest ever Para sport event.
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