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Latest update: 08/06/2009 18:17 +0300

The accomplishments of Raphael Stacchiotti

LIMASSOL, 4 June 2009 - Who is this remarkable teenager from Luxembourg called Raphael Stacchiotti?

He is only one of the greatest athletes of the Grand Duchy and one of the most promising swimmers at the XIII Games of the Small States of Europe.

It was therefore no coincidence that the youngster was the flag bearer during last yearís Olympic Games in Beijing. The 17-year-old, born 9 March 1992, had reached the finest moment in his budding career at the World Youth Championships in Rio di Janeiro where he finished fourth in the 200m freestyle event.

At this yearís European Youth Championships in Prague, he will be aiming to secure his first medal again in the 200m freestyle event.

Stacchiotti, who is of Italian origin as his name hints, can compete in all swimming events with the exception of breaststroke race which is why he confidently set his sights on eight gold medals at this yearís event.

What was more even more remarkable was the fact that he was chasing those medals in individual events seeing as Luxembourg didnít put forward a team in the menís relay event at the GSSE.

Stacchiotti didnít manage to reach his ambitious target after coming second in the 50m freestyle. But he took his sixth gold medal in the 200m freestyle event today and is now aiming for an incredible seventh in the 400m medley on Friday.

Believe it or not, the GSSE are not unknown territory for the teenager. He took part in the Monaco Games of 2007 taking the gold medal in the 100m backstroke event at just 15 years of age.

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