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Olympic Gold Medallist summits Everest
12:39 p.m. EDT May 23, 2003
7 Olympic medals and this morning the summit of Everest. 40 year old Manuela Di Centa has become the first Italian female Everest summiter and the 79th woman. She is a former Olympian who is now a television personality and journalist Italy. Previous to Everest she had no extreme high-altitude experience, but in three Olympics Manuela took home no less than 7 medals. In the 1994 Lillehammer Olympics alone she won 5, 2 of them were gold.

So far this year there have been four women who have summited Everest - on the North Side Liang Qun from China and Trynjte Young from America, and on the South Side, a French woman Alexia Zuberer, and Manuela Di Centa from Italy. With Manuela’s summit today, the total number of woman summiters rises to 79. In all, over 1660 climbers have reached the summit of Everest, and less than 5% of them have been women.

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