Ski Team

Wants to go out with a gold at Holmenkollen

Giorgio Di Centa
Giorgio Di Centa and a member of the Italian ski team, Beitostølen (photo: Christian Ruscetta, Ski-VM 2011)
Italian cross-country star Giorgio Di Centa (37) has his eyes fixed on gold. If his results at the Winter Olympics are good, his next goal will be to end his career with a World Championship gold at Holmenkollen.

We met the distinguished cross-country racer during the World Cup opening at Beitostølen. Together with the rest of the world’s elite, he was there to prepare for a new season that will include both the Olympics and the FIS Nordic World Cup in Oslo. Di Centa already has two Olympic golds (Turin 2006) and Olympic silver (Salt Lake City 2002), but has certainly not had enough precious metal yet to satisfy him, even though his age may be starting to tell.

“My goal is always to be on the podium. That’s what keeps me going. But at the same time I may have altered my expectations a little to allow for the fact that I’m getting older. So these days I’m mostly happy to be among the top ten,” admits Di Centa.
Aiming at the World Championships
When we ask Di Centa whether he will take part in the World Championships in Oslo, he takes on a more serious expression before he answers.
“That really depends on what happens in Vancouver. If my results in the Olympics are good, that means I still belong in cross-country. Then it would be natural for me to go on and concentrate on the World Championships in Oslo,” says the all-rounder.
WSC in Norway will always be special
Di Centa admits that the WSC in Norway will always be special, because the interest among the people is sky high. He has good memories of the last WSC in Norway and is convinced that the championships in Oslo will be at least as good.
“Of all the championships I have taken part in during my career, it is Trondheim in 1997 that I remember as the best. The public and the setting were outstanding. Absolutely fantastic. There was a sea of people that you only get in Norway. People in Norway make everybody feel welcome. The World Championships in your capital are bound to be just as fantastic. It would be great to be part of it, and perhaps I might end my career with a World Championship gold in Norway,” says the likeable ski legend, with his characteristic grin.