"Parents must follow their children, because if a parent gives up then also its child gives up"
The words of mother Maria Luisa make perfect sense when we realize that the daughter in question is Arianna Fontana.
A girl who chose an Olympic discipline like Short Track to express all the talent she has inside.
Arianna was born and raised in Berbenno di Valtellina (SO); she began to skate at the age of 4 when she was following the steps of her older brother Alessandro at Lanzada Ghiaccio sport academy. Her father Renato and her mother Maria had already noticed the love and passion she had for a sport that was not very popular in Italy. That is why they constantly took her to trainings in Valmalenco and in the city of Bormio.
These sacrifices began to pay off in 2006 when Arianna placed her first steps onto international stage thanks to silver medal won at the European Championships in Krynica Zdroj and bronze medal won at Turin Olympic Winter Games in 2006 with relay teammates Marta Capurso, Mara e Katia Zini, Cecilia Maffei.
At the age of 15 years and 314 days, Arianna became the youngest Italian athlete to have won a medal at the Olympic Winter Games: just a couple of weeks later she received the title of Knight of the italian republic.
This was the first turning point in Arianna’s career; as a result, she would then become the most important athlete within the Italian national team of Short Track with very impressive numbers: 24 medals won between the World Cup, World Championship and European Cup as well as the victory of the European crown in 2008 and 2009.
In 2010, at Vancouver Olympic Winter Games, Arianna was able to win once again the bronze medal she had won four years earlier but this time on her favorite distance: 500 metres. Before she was 20 years old Arianna had proven once again her extraordinary ability to not make mistakes during crucial phases of competitions.
As she became a key member of the national team in 2012, the representative of the yellow flames became the first Italian to win the Short Track World Cup in the 500 metres category.
Arianna maintained her title of European Champion from 2011 to 2013 and also obtain two third places at the World Cup of Short track in the 500 metres. These results were very encouraging for the Olympic Winter Games of Sochi in 2014. Russia was the land that saw Arianna get 3 of the total 8 medals won by the Italian team: silver in 500 metres, bronze in 1500 metres singles and relay with her teammates Lucia Peretti, Martina Valcepina and Elena Viviani.
From Turin to Sochi, Arianna has proved to be an undisputed star that represents the union between two generations of skaters that were able to show their talents at the highest level of the world.
Arianna is now looking forward to the next (and maybe last) goal of her astonishing career: Pyeongchang 2018.