Emiliano Brembilla

Emiliano Brembilla was born in San Pietro near Bergamo on 21 December 1978. 6’ tall and weighing 78kg he was coached by Alberto Castagnetti. His early success came in 1994 at the European juniors where he won the 1500m and finished second in the 400m freestyle (3’56”46). In 1996 he went into the Atlanta Olympics on the back of the European title he won in the 400m freestyle in Rostock in the short course. He finished fourth at the Olympics both in the 1500m (15’08”58) and the 400m (3’49”87). In 1997, Brembilla won two gold medals at the European championships in Seville in the 400m (3’45”96) and 1500m (14’58”65, a national record). He won his first world championship medal in Perth in 1998 - silver in the 1500m. The same year he won two medals at the European championships in the short course in Sheffield and then in 1999 he took silver at the European championships in Istanbul in the 400m freestyle (3’48”50). Brembilla went into the 2000 Sydney Olympics on the back of three medals at the European championships in Helsinki - gold in the 400m (3’48”56), silver in the 1500m (15’06”42) and gold in 4x200m relay. Yet he just missed out on a medal by one hundredth of a second in the 400m (3’47”01). He bounced back at the world championships in Fukuoka in 2001 when he returned to the podium alongside Ian Thorpe and Grant Hackett in the 400m freestyle. He took bronze in 3’45”11, a personal best. He followed that up with a historic silver medal in the 4x200m. He also won in the short course at the European championships in Antwerp with a time of 3’41”27. The Italian record holder in the 200m freestyle, he competed at his last European championships in 2010 before becoming a father to Margherita in 2012. He ended his career with Olympic gold in 4x200m in Athens 2004, four world championship medals and 19 European medals, including 15 gold.