It was from the first edition, that of Rome 1960 with 80 podiums, that Italy had not won so many medals at the Paralympic Games now in its sixteenth edition. Also beaten the previous record of Seoul 1988 with 58. A little more than two days from the end, Italy has 61 medals in the safe, 13 gold, 26 silver and 22 bronze for a ninth place in the medal table.
Only in the first edition, that of Rome 1960 when the event was a sort of ‘pilot edition’, the blues of Paralympic sports – 61 years ago there were only 8 disciplines and today they are 22 – they managed to get on the podium 80 times, 29 of them on the top step but the participating countries were only 23 against 163 in Tokyo 2020.
Until the 1972 edition of Heidelberg in Germany, Italy was always among the top ten nations. From Toronto 1976 to London 2012, Italy was no longer among the top ten nations in the medal table. Over the years, the Paralympic sport has spread to all continents and the disciplines have also increased more and more. From the 1968 edition of Tel Aviv to Barcelona 1992, sports have doubled, from ten to twenty and now they are twenty-two.
Paralympics with many medals were also those of Stoke Mandeville 1984 with 42, Seoul 1988 with 58 (the previous record, excluding Rome ’60), Barcelona 1992 with 35, Atlanta 1996 with 45 and Rio de Janeiro 2016 with 39. The editions with the thinnest booty, Heidelberg 1972 with 17, Beijing 2008 with 18 and Athens 2004 with 19.