Italian Struggle To Find Swimming Pools To Train In Sparks #stopolympics Coronavirus Lockdown Campaign

federica-pellegrini

Italian Swimming #stopolympics Campaign

Italy‘s leading swimmers, which include Olympic 1500m freestyle champion Gregorio Paltrinieri and World champion Federica Pellegrini, are struggling to find adequate time at swimming pools during their nation’s coronavirus-pandemic lockdown, prompting the leading Italian website Nuoto.com to launch a #stopolympics campaign in the interest of fairness and solidarity in sport.

The Danish Swimming Federation has contacted FINA, the international swimming federation, to work out how and when and where its swimmers may qualify for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games should the showcase event proceed from July 24.

Now, Nuoto.com Editor in chief Federico Gross has launched a campaign that calls on the swimming community to get behind a suggestion from a Tokyo 2020 Board member to delay the Games for one or even two years to allow the world to bring the coronavirus pandemic under control and allow athletes and programs time to cope, recover and prepare properly on a new footing. Says Gross:

“In these days, many Italian swimmers are riding all over the country desperately looking for a place to train. It’s an unsafe and unfair situation, that soon will replicate in whole Europe, America, Oceania. We firmly believe that the sport must stop worldwide now, helping the health organizations to defeat the Covid-19 pandemic. So we launched the campaign #stopolympics”.

He appealed to the worldwide swimming community to get behind the campaignm

In the picture: Gregorio Paltrinieri ITA, 003659

Gregorio Paltrinieri – Photo Courtesy: Arena

The official line of the International Olympic Committee and the Tokyo 2020 organisers is that the Games will go aheads as planned despite the pandemic. The IOC is, however, in constant touch with the World Health Organization, which is set to make an announcement on “basic thoughts” about prospects for the Olympics “soon, according to the President of Tokyo 2020.

Nuoto explains its “Fermiamoci/let’s stop” as follows:

It’s pretty obvious: Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games will not be held.

We know the current situation of Italy, while now the rest of Europe is starting to face COVID-19, the United States are probably already plagued and today the World Health Organization has declared the state of pandemic.

Stopping the Olympic train with its related economic activity would be catastrophic, but it is clear to anyone with a glimpse of reason that the conditions for concentrating ten thousand athletes with their accompanying technicians, medical judges, journalists, volunteer and spectators no longer exist.

Maybe there’s a little hope that health conditions will return normal, but certainly one cannot imagine that the athletes will arrive in Japan in an acceptable psychophysical state.

Admitting that the situation is out of control and postponing the event for one or two years would allow our swimmers to abandon the frantic quest for water space. Moreover they would be free to stay at home safely, protecting their own and others’ health.

We would be happy to be proved wrong, but right now the watchword for us is: #stopolympics.

The Italian version off the notice can be found at the Nuoto.com website.

 

 

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