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Delfina PIGNATIELLO
Sport Swimming
NOC Argentina   
GenderWomen
Born19 Apr 2000 in San Isidro, ARG
 Human Interest 
Further Personal Information
Residence
Argentina
Occupation
Athlete, Student
Languages
Spanish
Sport Specific Information
When and where did you begin this sport?
She began swimming at eight months old, and began competing in the sport at age 13.
Why this sport?
Her mother was a swimming coach and put her in the water at an early age. "She taught me how to swim, I went every day to her school. I grew up in the pool. I tried other sports, hockey, artistic gymnastics, basketball, but every time that I had to make a decision I opted for swimming."
Club / Team
Sociedad Alemana de Gimnasia de Villa Ballester [SAGVB]: Buenos Aires, ARG
Name of coach
Gustavo Roldan [club, national], ARG
General Interest
Nicknames
Delfi (clarin.com, 11 Aug 2019)
Hobbies
Watching TV series and films, reading, drawing, writing, photography. (lanacion.com.ar, 14 Nov 2019; Twitter profile, 04 Jan 2022)
Most influential person in career
Her mother and her grandmother. (lanacion.com.ar, 14 Nov 2019)
Injuries
She competed with a shoulder injury at the 2018 Youth Olympic Games in Buenos Aires, Argentina, and shortly after the event she sustained tendinitis in both shoulders. (clarin.com, 11 Aug 2019; swimswam.com, 30 Dec 2018)
Awards and honours
She was named Female Athlete of the Year by the Argentinian Olympic Committee in 2019. (lanacion.com.ar, 05 Dec 2019)

She was Argentina's flag bearer at the closing ceremony of the 2019 Pan American Games in Lima, Peru. (clarin.com, 11 Aug 2019)

She was recipient of the Olimpia de Oro [Golden Olympia] as Best Sportsperson of the Year in Argentina in 2017. She has also been recipient of the Olimpia de Plata [Silver Olympia] as Best Swimmer of the Year in 2017, 2018 and 2019. Both awards are presented by the Sports Journalists' Association in Argentina. (clarin.com, 20 Dec 2017; swimswam.com, 30 Dec 2018; espn.com.ar, 18 Dec 2019)
Other information
RETIREMENT PLANS
She plans to continue swimming until the 2028 Olympic Games in Los Angeles, and says she would like to remain in the sport following her retirement from competing. "When the retirement time will arrive I wouldn't like to be apart from swimming, maybe I could become a coach, let's see." (lanacion.com.ar, 14 Nov 2019)

DEALING WITH MENTAL HEALTH
She struggled with her mental health following her performance at the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo, where she received negative attention on social media. "After 9,000 hours of training, more than 3,000 plunges into the water, hundreds of races and some gold medals, I finished my race in Tokyo and I realised I hadn't achieved the time I was looking for or finished the race in the position I wanted, and at that moment the only thing that I thought was what my followers would say. I ended up being attacked and the worst thing is that I believed it." She says listening to other athletes talk about their own experiences dealing with pressure and disappointment helped her during this time. "I felt alone until I realised other athletes were feeling the same. Do you know how important it was for me to listen to [US gymnast] Simone Biles talk about the pressure at the competition? She was also feeling alone and it was then when I understood the need to have a strong mind, to be at peace with oneself and with others. My healing process began there." (lanacion.com.ar, 29 Nov 2021; infobae.com, 16 Dec 2021)

 Competition Highlights
Olympic Games
Rank Year Venue Event Result
29 2021 Tokyo, JPN 1500m Freestyle 16:33.69
27 2021 Tokyo, JPN 800m Freestyle 8:44.85
World Championships Short Course
Rank Year Venue Event Result
6 2016 Windsor, ON, CAN 800m Freestyle 8:26.41
24 2016 Windsor, ON, CAN 400m Freestyle 4:10.68 
27 2016 Windsor, ON, CAN 200m Freestyle 2:00.20 
Pan American Games
Rank Year Venue Event Result
1 2019 Lima, PER 800m Freestyle 8:29.42
1 2019 Lima, PER 1500m Freestyle 16:16.54
1 2019 Lima, PER 400m Freestyle 4:10.86
4 2019 Lima, PER 4 x 200m Freestyle Relay 8:15.72
5 2019 Lima, PER 4 x 100m Freestyle Relay 3:34.87