Stefania Belmondo, veteran of two 2 Olympics and 4 world championships, will not participate the 2006 Olympics in her home country of Italy next February. The decision was announced by Belmondo during a meeting in Milan with the president of the FISI, Gaetano Coppi. Stefania's husband, Davide Casagrande, was also present.
I had decided to give [the 2006 Olympics] a try,” explained Stefania, “because the desire to return to competition in the Olympic Games in my own country was really strong…. In the past few months, I began to hear the distance of my family. Mathias is now two and Lorenzo is still in diapers, and a mommy knows how her sons need her. I am a mommy, and this should explain everything.”
Belmondo, who will be 37 years old just before the Olympic Games, will be however by the side of the Italian squad in the competitions of Pragelato. We hoped for a dream,” said FISI's Coppi, “that unfortunately will not be confirmed. The name of Stefania Belmondo will remain for always in the annals of the winter sport…Our sport is differentiated from others by the great sensibility that our athletes demonstrate: Stefania is a champion also from this point of view.