Giulio Gerardi was born in northern Italy near the French border. In the 1930s he was considered the top cross-country skier in Italy and his coach was convinced that he could win the 18 km at the 1936 Winter Olympics or at least medal. In 1934 he won the Italian Championship in Cortina ahead of the favorite and 1932 Olympian Gino Soldà but in Garmisch Girardi felt the pressure of Italy’s expectations, placing 19th. Several days later, he and his relay teammates came close to the bronze medal in the 4x10 km relay, but finished fourth. Girardi did win two bronze medals at the World Championships, one each in 1937 and 1941.