News and views from Anita Protti
European silver medallist in the 400m hurdles in Split in 1990, this Vaudois woman has always worn the colours of her town with pride. At the age of 48, she remains as attached to the city of Lausanne as ever.
She never stops running, Anita Protti. Retired from the track since the mid-1990s, this Lausannoise has lost none of her verve and good humour. Seventeen years on, her record time of 54.25 seconds in the 400m hurdles still stands in Switzerland, while the hurdle specialist lives every day in the fast lane, be it behind the wheel on her way from one meeting to the next or on her spinning bike giving lessons in modern-day torture to people who enjoy suffering. And always in Lausanne. Her town. A town that saw her birth on 4 August 1964 and that was the setting for her first sporting exploits in the colours of the capital’s club, Lausanne-Sports.
“What I also like about Lausanne is that there is life after sport”
An attractive proposition
Mother to Coralie, aged fifteen, Anita Protti never tires of heaping praise on the Vaudois city: “This is my town, a wonderful town that stays on the move and is really good at organising projects to do with sport and well-being.” And the ex-champion knows what she is talking about - she is, after all, one of the coaches for sports courses in the workplace being offered to City employees: “The concept is well worth a mention. There are several activities once a week. I particularly appreciate that because it’s interactive and you can meet people from different backgrounds. What’s more, quite honestly it’s no secret that sport brings people together and, as the Olympic Capital, I think that Lausanne provides a more than attractive network in terms of sport.”
A quick drink in Le Zinc
“What I also like about Lausanne is that there is life after sport,” asserts the Lausannoise. And Anita Protti has shaped her life in sport after participating in sport at competitive level. Of course: with qualifications as a fitness instructor under her belt, she teaches spinning four hours a week in one of the town’s halls: ”Passing something on is totally my thing. As a very direct person, I love giving people advice.”
Whenever the Vaudoise talks about her town, she highlights its human side too: “I lived in Zurich for a while ten years ago, but it wasn’t my kind of city. Everything is too big there, too artificial. I was invited to some trendy parties but didn’t feel at ease there to be honest. Lausanne has a more low-key feel to it, but that suits me just fine. And it’s true that some people still remember me, especially the older ones. My favourite places? I’m not much of a partygoer but I like the bar called the Verre à pied near to Manor. And if I must name a club, I will say Le Zinc in Saint-François Square. More places for oldies actually. (laughter)”
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