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Stefano Sertorelli

Biographical information

TypeCompeted in Olympic Games (non-medal events)
SexMale
Full nameStefano•Sertorelli
Used nameStefano•Sertorelli
Born24 December 1911 in Bormio, Sondrio (ITA)
Died17 December 1994 in Bormio, Sondrio (ITA)
NOC Italy

Biography

Stefano Sertorelli was a member of one of the great Italian skiing families. His father Costante was a famous guide on the Monte Stelvio, but froze to death in 1922 while trying to save a group of skiers overwhelmed by an avalanche. Stefano was one of 11 children when his mother was widowed. His oldest brother Erminio became head of the family and he too was a famous cross-country skier and, like Stefano, was an Olympian, competing at the 1932 Olympics where he was the Italian Flagbearer at the Opening Ceremony. Another brother, Cinto, also competed at the 1936 Games. He was an excellent Alpine skier, but was sadly killed at the age of 24 in an accident at Garmisch-Partenkirchen in 1938.

Stefano was a military patrol skier, Alpine skier, and Italian Alpine skiing coach. He was also an Olympic champion in the military ski patrol at the 1936 Winter Olympics at Garmisch-Partenkirchen, where the discipline was included as a demonstration sport. Sertorelli was selected as one of the four Italian athletes (from seven) to compete in the Military Ski Patrol demonstration sport at the 1936 Winter Olympics, along with Enrico Silvestri, Luigi Perenni and Sisto Scilligo and they went on to win the gold medal ahead of the two Nordic teams, Finland and Sweden, by just 14 seconds.

The Italian victory was celebrated across Italy and Benito Mussolini presented each participant with 30,000 lira to commemorate Italy winning its first Nordic skiing Olympic gold medal. Sertorelli received a one-grade promotion and returned to his job at the Army Warfare School. At the same time, he devoted himself to teaching skiing with his brothers. After World War II, he became director of the Madesimo Ski School during the winter months, while in summer he was with the Casati Ski School where Federico and Giorgio Thoeni, parents respectively of Gustavo and Rolando, were fellow instructors. In February 2011, Sertorelli’s widow and three sons opened Chalet Italia in Garmisch-Partenkirchen, which hosted a multimedia exhibition dedicated to many aspects of Stefano’s life.

Results

Games Discipline (Sport) / Event NOC / Team Pos Medal As
1936 Winter Olympics Military Ski Patrol (Skiing) ITA Stefano Sertorelli
Military Ski Patrol, Men (Olympic (non-medal)) Italy 1

Olympic family relations