Hosts Italy announce team for half marathon Euros

Three distance Italian distance runners< Alex Holtz, Fabrizio Vallone and Alessandro Tomaiuolo

Credit: Emanuele Antonio Minerva, Mauro Ficerai

Alex Holtz, Alessandro Tomaiuolo and Fabrizio Vallone will represent hosts Italy at the 2017 International Federation for Intellectual Impairment Sport (World Intellectual Impairment Sport) European Half Marathon Championships on 18 September in Udine.

Being held as part of the 18th edition of the prestigious Maratonina Udinese, runners from Portugal, Spain, Poland and Sweden will also compete. It is the second time the event will be held in Udine following on from 2009.

Holtz returns to major international competition for the first time since the 2011 World Intellectual Impairment Sport Global Games, following a successful national Championships in Rome in July. Vallone and Tomaiuolo both competed at the 2016 World Intellectual Impairment Sport World Indoor Championships in Ancona, Italy.

Diego Perez, Giovanni Cotugno, Giuseppe Raffermati and Giorgio Zanmarchi will support the Italian team.

The Italians’ main rivals are Portuguese teammates Jose Azevedo and Paulo Pinheiro.

Azevedo is the reigning world champion whilst Pinheiro holds the European crown and has medalled at every edition of the competition since 2005.

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