Appearances are deceptive in parts of the Olympic Stadium, where the sky is threatening to rain. Rome’s light-colored sky is a beautiful memory, this summer slowly evaporating.
Appearances are deceptive, for although peace prevails around the Olympic stadium, In the Federal Chambers the atmosphere is heavy. for days President Cordiano d’Anione – Since February 2021 at the head of the Italian Cycling Federation – In the midst of the storm for 106,000 euros in commissions which had to be liquidated by an Irish company to pay for some brokerage. to me side There is also the question related to Norma Gimondi, the resigned Vice President, daughter of such a great father, who could have been verbally abused by a Federal Councilor and would consider legal action over what happened which – in addition to the commission issue – was dealt with days ago. “La Gazzetta dello Sport”.
For registration, the story begins on August 4: sent to the federal councils for approval Minutes of June 18 Where it looks as if by magic Point 3.6 was not discussed in the Council Which provides for a sponsorship contract with the Irish company Reiwa Management Limited and a commission of 106 thousand euros. Vice President Norma Gimondi She noticed this inclusion and asked for explanations in the Federal Council on August 27, where she was harshly criticized by Council member Gianantonio Crisavoli. Gemondy resigns. Federciclismo barricaded herself behind a deafening silence, Until the other evening (9:30 p.m., editor’s note), he issued a statement in which he spoke of a “responsible error” In preparing the June 18 minutes in which he “erroneously inserted the name of Rewa as the subject for which sponsorship commissions should be paid”. Finally, he also provided four names of the people to whom the respective committees were supposed to go. Meanwhile, on that day, the number one man in Italian sports Giovanni Malago called Dagnoni for clarification. “tuttobiciweb.it” He is invited to Rome and in this climate and in these buildings, we find ourselves in the presence of President Cordiano d’Agnoni and General Secretary Marcello Tolo.
Mr. President, why don’t you speak first?
“Because in fact there was nothing to explain, but we always wanted to share everything with the council, and therefore after the celebration last August 6, everything had to be left with nothing, giving us a date after the holidays. We met on the 27th and on that occasion we made it clear that nothing was done and no agreement was reached with any company.”
Sure, now, but on August 18, when the case raised by a specialized site (ciclismoweb.neted), one can immediately say that with that Irish company there was none and commissions would be paid regularly, but in Italy.
“At that moment I did not have the opportunity to compare myself with anyone since we were on a full summer vacation and the European Championships in Munich were in full swing. Then we arrived at the 27th Federal Council where we were told that there was nothing.”
On August 23, the denial arrived: Enervit Spa, which claims to have entered into contracts only with the Federation without intermediaries. Reiwa herself says that she has no agreements with you, and finally, the same Federciclismo confirms that nothing has been signed. Little problem, the next day to Corriere della Sera.It literally says, “Actually, the TCI sponsor was introduced by a friend. Instead of giving him the commission directly, I asked Reiwa to submit one invoice to us and distribute the money to the reviewers. Perhaps they are butchers by trade, not middlemen, and they can’t do the invoice.” Not exactly a good director… He first denies contact with Reiwa, then questions him.
“It was a way to get people to understand what we wanted to do, but that never happened because no relationship with this company was closed. I repeat, there was never any contract, there was no resolution that was signed or ratified, and certainly no payments.”
I’d be pedantic and apologise, but this could have been removed immediately.
“In this period there may have been a lax communication, which hurt us from the point of view of the image and allowed many to build articles on the foundation of nothingness day in and day out.”
Gianni Bugno repeated several times that it was he who proposed to Honorable Gianfranco Librandi (the owner of TCI, the world leader in the production of LED lamps, who, in turn, confirmed that he was convinced by the two-time world champion, Ed) to sponsor the national team and they were not invited to the press conference. She has argued on several occasions that Bugno, on the other hand, had nothing to do with Librandi and that TCI intercepted her directly thanks to a friend of hers. Why did you call Bugno to his offices the day before yesterday? Why did you offer him commissions on something you claimed you didn’t have to pay?
“That’s what you say! I confirm I saw Gianni to tell him there is only one truth. Gianni Monti – my intermediary – comes to see me and says: Pepe Sala is a candidate for Milan and Gianfranco Librandi wants to help him, but he wants to include an athlete in the team. I suggest Gianni Bugno, who has always been left-of-centre. I call Gianni (Bogno, editor’s note) and ask him if he is interested and he has given me his consent. Get to know each other and the election campaign begins. Then Gianni, who had learned Librandi’s passion for our sport, advised him to enter cycling with Federciclismo. That’s it.”
Well, but then why pay commissions to Mr. Monti, when it is agreed by Bougno?
“Because we both work on this project: Monte introduces Librandi to me and I introduces Librandi to Gianni. Then Bugno transfers the care to us. In fact, I said to Monty: Do you agree with Gianni Bugno? And so, when Gianni expressed his disappointment, I called him the day before yesterday to tell him: Do you have a VAT number? He told me yes, but despite complaining about making a contribution and claiming he had done a good race, he has now told me, in principle, that he no longer wants anything.”
He was not even invited to the press conference …
“I have personally apologized for this.”
Are you aware of the fact that there is a lot of mess in this whole affair?
“Yes, yes, up to a point. I honestly tell you that it is also difficult for me to continue to provide explanations for some of the ‘technical aspects’ that are on our board. When we say: members should know…but this is a business issue and I don’t understand what it is The explanations I must give.
But the Cycling Federation is nothing: it belongs to everyone. It manages public money, even if you or your collaborators find it.
“If you are accusing me of not getting ahead in time, I can agree with you, but in this particular case we are calm because as a union we are as transparent as few, so much so that we have an average of one council a month, whereas in the past they would give four tips max per year Someone says jokingly, when they see that the company name has been mistakenly copied in the report, we are a wrong union: maybe yes, since we mistakenly increased the number of sponsorships by more than a million, we may have increased By mistake the capital of the company, and we have always mistakenly won 95 medals so far. When you work you are wrong, the important thing is not to make the same mistakes again.”
I hope you don’t make more mistakes.
“If you’ll excuse me, a cinema has been edited about accidental sin: here we are talking more about form than substance.”
However, in addition to this financial-administrative flaw, there is a unique flaw. Norma Gemondi, who raised the problem of the addition in the minutes, was called ignorant by a member of the Federal Council.
I read in the newspapers that she was attacked and she is not. The tones were critical, but she heard and saw the offending spot and there is no passage indicating that it was a woman. I didn’t find anything sexist or discriminatory. I showed her the video. The general secretary and I ran after Norma, and I asked her to stay. I apologized on everyone’s behalf, I looked for her and also invited her to the awards party so you could talk to her face to face, but she never answered me again. At that moment I sent her a small letter of apology and great closeness.”
What is his mental state at the moment?
“It is a great disappointment, because now I dedicate my whole life to this task. You see I get goosebumps, because I assure you that I put my heart and my passion into it. In recent weeks I have received messages of solidarity from everyone, especially from the technicians. Everyone is close to me and the results prove it and I swear to you this thing really hurts (and as he says, the sound is exploding with emotion, Ed). I put a passion and a commitment, all I have accumulated in my career and do not find it right to judge him for things that do not exist, only because there is a determination behind it that wants to discredit our work: this thing hurts me very much.”
When are you planning to meet President Malago?
“I heard him and I am happy that in his statements he confirmed the health of our union from the point of view of accounts, management and results. So I don’t want to bother him, I know he has confidence and when he wants I’ll meet him. Anyway, on the 15th of the month, I will have the National Council of my universe and I will definitely see him there. On that occasion, I hope to be able to speak absolutely calmly also with Norma Gimondi.”
They also asked for his resignation: you think about it?
“And why on earth? Those who ask for these things have no idea what it means to lead a union and have no qualification to be able to make such a request. Resignation asks if something is wrong, no for nothing based on nothing. These people will have to apologize one day.”