Verona, Aroldo Serra: at the age of 90 he is the Italian shooting champion

Aroldo Serra (top right) with the Italian champion team

Veronese is the oldest active athlete in Europe. And from September 18 as well Italian champion in precision shooting. His name is Aroldo Cera, ninety years old in March, a resident of Bardolino in the Veronese region, a member of the Cerea National Target Shooting and a timeless irony: I have become a wise joker, with a very respectable palm behind me.

The first rifle at the age of 8 years

The first time I held a rifle I was 8 years old – Cera remembers – at 7 I was orphaned and adopted from a family living in the countryside. Infinite places, nature, the ox and the tradition of hunting. The passion for guns was born that way. I used a muzzle with a powder bottle that left flames on my skin. I always had my hands marked. This kid in the middle of the field has now, for the second time, become the Italian champion at Bench Rest, a specialty at a distance of 50 meters carried out with rifles of caliber 22 Lr: the shot is fired in a sitting position, with the rifle resting only in front of the rest. The race consists of two rounds of 20 minutes each, with a break of 5 minutes, in which the shooter must hit 25 racing targets, except for any test shots.

The most sweaty gold

The hug between Cera and Petrini
The hug between Cera and Petrini

In the championship held in Pisa, he reached the maximum score in the competition – explains Paola Berti, president of the Cerea National Shooting Sports Association -. Stroke after the shot, the team of “three bodyguards” consisting of Aroldo Cera, Sandro Pozzani and Felice Maistrello, focused the orbit despite the wind affecting the orbit. Together they won gold in the Light Varmint category. On the same day, the Cerea division conquered the rest of the podium: the silver at High Varmint (heavy) and bronze category in Sporter. This is a great record: in this specialty, gold, silver and bronze have never been in the same category. A pride and tribute to sports was also celebrated with fellowship events. Four months ago, at Cerea, we have celebrated the victory of Agustin Martin Petrini, European champion continues Aoldo. He went to me and rested his head on my shoulder. What a good boy. There are seventy years of difference between me.

The parenthesis of the sailboat

The passion for shooting, in ninety years of life, has been betrayed by only one small parenthesis on a sailboat: I went boating for fifteen years, but after two discs slipped, I took my steps again. Everyone has their own passions: there are those who play billiards, those who chase women – he jokes – and who, like me, loves sports. He trains two or three times a week, starting with the electric SUV from Bardolino to go to Cerea. Total independence, displayed with 100 km (with return) for each workout and on the most important routes. He drove alone to the Pisa race – Bertie smiles – but he also drives longer distances: four years ago he went to Benevento alone. For 2022, Aroldo already has a goal: God willing, since for me infinite life, next year I will do the world championship in Luxembourg. The secret of his athletic success? I enjoy it – reveals the current champion of Italy -. If I was not having fun, I would not even go to the race. President Berti concludes: Cera has always fought more for fun than for competition. With the Coni we have started the procedures to give him the star for sporting value and to verify if his record as the oldest athlete in Europe can be extended to the whole world. His great teaching should be the subject of study: if you have fun it is easier to win.

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October 4, 2021 (change October 4, 2021 | 14:06)


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