IOC President Thomas Bach received in Italy the Collare D’Oro, the highest award of the Italian Olympic Committee (CONI). The award was presented by CONI President and IOC Member Giovanni Malagó; while IOC Executive Board member Ivo Ferriani and IOC Honorary Members Mario Pescante, Franco Carraro and Manuela Di Centa took to the stage to pay tribute and remember key moments from the IOC President’s Olympic career.
Italian Olympians past and present were also there, with swimming gold medallist and IOC Member Federica Pellegrini paying tribute.
One surprise guest was Carl Montano, one of President Bach’s Italian opponents in the final of the men’s team foil event at the Olympic Games Montreal 1976. The pair had not seen each other since they stopped competing.
Accepting the award, President Bach said: “This award truly belongs to the entire IOC and the whole of the Olympic Movement. Because, without the support of so many around the globe, our Olympic mission to make the world a better place through sport could never be accomplished.”
The President was also given the Flambeau D’Or award by Panathlon International for his “outstanding contribution to the Olympic Movement and advancing the cultural role of sport.” The award was presented by the President of Panathlon International, Pierre Zappelli.