VERONA – She has already participated in 2014 and in 2016. We are talking about the Italian athlete Valeria Straneo, Italian record holder of Marathon (2h23’44 “) and world and European silver medal, always on the distance of 42.195km. The athlete from Alessandria will be present on Sunday February 17th 2019 at Gensan Giulietta & Romeo Half Marathon, racing for the third time on the roads of Verona. In 2014 it was a great race, she won the race and the title of Italian champion of half marathon with a brilliant final time: 1h09’45 “leaving behind the other Italian athlete Anna Incerti after an exciting challenge throughout the race. In 2016, on the contrary, it did not go as planned: “I suffer a lot from the cold and that day it was raining and there was an icy wind. I had physical problems, a muscle injury arrived a few days before forced me to retire at 17 km and then to stand still several months “, these are the first words of Valeria Straneo when you ask her a memory of Gensan Giulietta & Romeo Half Marathon:” Yes, however I remember well also 2014. There was a party; I also made the record of the path at the time. I was really fit, then in August I came second in the European Championships in Zurich “.
Joy and sorrow in the following years for Valeria Straneo, who on Sunday 17th, in Verona, will begin, at almost 43 years, maybe a third competitive life. On the Fidal website you can read her sport story: she started immediately athletics from long distances and then entrusted to the trainer Beatrice Brossa. In 2006 she gave birth to her first child (Leonardo), the year after the second one (Arianna), a choice shared with her husband Manlio. Graduated in foreign languages and literature, she worked in a nursery school as a teacher. In May 2010 the operation that changed her life: the removal of the spleen and part of the gallbladder. An intervention made necessary following an inherited spherocytosis that had caused her great health problems. This is how her second competitive time was born: The absolute debut in the national team at the age of 35 at the 2011 European Championships in Velenje (Slovenia) where she placed tenth. On April 15th, 2012 in Rotterdam she has improved the Italian marathon with 2h23: 44, at the Olympic Games in London 2012 she was placed in the top eight, then the following year at the World Cup in Moscow she has won the silver medal at the end of a courageous race lived all in command and in 2014, at the Europeans in Zurich, she arrived second again. From 2017 she was under the technical guidance of Massimo Magnani and in December 2018 she returned to the marathon after more than two years of absence and then started to be followed by the Olympic athlete Stefano Baldini.
And it is precisely from here, from the professional union with Stefano Baldini and her first official race under his guidance that the third act starts: “At Gensan Giulietta & Romeo Half Marathon I would like to run on the pace of 3’25” at km, assuming to cross the finish line on 1h12 ‘, I think I’m worth this time now, then you never know. It ‘s true I ran at the beginning of the month, winning the Half Marathon of Due Perle, but that Sunday I did only 1h18’ because from the table of Baldini I had to do a 35km long so I made 14km before the official route and of course the pace in the race it was lower, but it’s better than training alone in the snow of Alessandria … “.
THE DOCTOR – Valeria smiles, there is optimism in her words after two years of darkness: “Yes, it is true that I ran the Valencia Marathon last December 2nd with a good but not extraordinary preparation. I finished in 2h30’26 “, not bad, under the guidance of Massimo Magnani and after perhaps having finally recovered from a thousand health problems to the biceps of the femur that is my weak point without a doubt. Before then, it was from the Olympic marathon in Rio De Janeiro that I could not do a marathon, finally in July I found a doctor in Turin who placed me and whom I trust blindly “.
TRAINERS – In the last two years two changes of coaches, up to Stefano Baldini: “With my historic coach Beatrice Brossa it was like a marriage divorce, it was very painful even personally, but I felt that it was time to change. Certain things you can feel and see from results that no longer come and from injuries that are telling you that maybe you are doing something wrong. With Massimo Magnani I started in September 2017 until December 2018 in Valencia, a very professional person and without a doubt a great expert, very careful and scrupulous, I was very satisfied. But then I saw a picture of Baldini who trained the Dini brothers and there I lit the light, those are the things you hear inside and my decision to change again was immediate. I proposed to Stefano and he accepted this new challenge “. December 2018 was dedicated to physical recovery from Valencia Marathon and on January 7th, a month ago, the real beginning of the work: “Baldini is a very scrupulous person, attentive to my needs, I feel he listens to me and I think this is essential. I’m not sure about five years ago when I was grinding 200km a week without any problem, now I have to manage maybe lengthening the recovery time after challenging workouts. Between age and injuries I’m certainly not an easy subject to train. Stefano has studied all my training programs of past years; I can say that by now he knows me very well. I am very confident “.
A month has gone, Verona and Gensan Giulietta & Romeo half Marathon will be just the beginning of a new career: “The idea is to dream again, I would like to do a marathon in April or May under 2h30 ‘, something that a few years ago I did regularly and with relative tranquility. Today many things have changed, but I will try “.
THE MUSIC OF VALERIA – Valeria Straneo has suggested some songs for Veronamarathon playlist, that will be soon on Spotify and which will be played thanks to Radio NumberOne in the 3 expected musical points, audible in 9 different positions on the race, Sunday 17th: “I run very often listening to music, I love the Australian singer Sia, her Chandelier is unique or The Greatest, Never Give Up or Unstoppable. Still listening like Lady Gaga, Tina Turner with Simply The Best puts me as crazy as Queen. “
MUSIC – Run, have fun and hear music that pushes you, loads you and gives you the rhythm. This year Gensan Giulietta & Romeo Half Marathon will be very ‘dance’. In the 21.097km there are 3 points with professional deejays that will give the charge to all the participants. Musical diffusion that will be audible in 9 points, practically every 2km. But it is not enough because within a few days on the Spotify platform it will be possible to listen the compilation of Gensan Giulietta & Romeo Half Marathon created thanks to the songs suggested by the top runner champions in the race. Music list and samples will be unveiled within a few days.
SATURDAY FEBRUARY 16th – CITY SIGHTSEEING RUN – As if the three distances and the three events on Sunday were not enough, the organizers of Veronamarathon Eventi thought that even on Saturday morning, February 16th, the day before the event, it could be a good moment to make a training accompanied by the Veronamarathon Team instructors. An excellent opportunity to do a warm-up in anticipation of Sunday, receive some advice, meet many other participants and at the same time visit the historic center of Verona with relative calm. Departure at 10.30 am from the Veronamarathon Hub in Circonvallazione Maroncelli, 7, participants will be all those Italians or foreigners, who may already be in town from Friday evening. Free event is possible for all members of one of the Sunday races.
THANKS TO OUR SPONSORS – The event Gensan Giulietta & Romeo Half Marathon 2019 is possible thanks to the fundamental support of the City of Verona and the Patronage of the Chamber of Commerce I.A.A. A special thanks goes also to our partners, many for many years follow us, always renewing their trust. First the title sponsor Gensan, the Main Sponsors Agsm, Lidl, Zuegg and ZeroWind. Technical Sponsor Joma. Green Partner Amia and Acque Veronesi, among the partners Ali Spa and B & B Hotels Italia. Official suppliers: Eurocompany and Armando De Angelis, Marazzi Noleggio, Scaligera Service, Melegatti and Gls Corriere Espresso. Media Partner: Radio NumberOne and Telenuovo.