On a fantastic Friday, Italy added to their Olympic medal haul winning the men’s 4x100m relay, the men’s 75kg karate and the women’s 20km walk.
The quartet of Lorenzo Patta, Marcell Jacobs, Eseosa Desalu, Filippo Tortu, beat Britain into second place. It was Italy’s 10th gold of the Games with a time of 37.50 seconds.
Double Olympic champion
Jacobs is now a double Olympic champion after winning the individual 100m race. He takes Usain Bolt’s crown as the world’s fastest man.
However, it was Tortu who chased down Britain’s Nethaneel Mitchell-Blake on the last leg to clinch victory by the narrowest of margins – one hundredth of a second.
Earlier in the day, Luigi Busà took gold in the men’s 75kg karate event to claim Italy’s 37th medal at Tokyo 2020. Busà beat Azerbaijan’s Rafael Aghayev.
Antonella Palmisano won the women’s 20km walk, also on Friday, to complete a golden double in the sport. She followed in the footsteps of Massimo Stano who triumphed in the men’s event on Thursday.
Previous record tally set over 60 years ago
Italy set the previous Italian record tally of 36 medals at the 1932 Games in Los Angeles and in Rome in 1960.
Italy is certain to finish in the top 10 of the medals table. Currently, they are seventh place. They cannot be overtaken by 11th-placed New Zealand or 12th-placed South Korea.
The current medal haul (at the time of writing) is 10 golds, 10 silvers and 18 bronzes.