San Marino's Alessandra Perilli wins first Olympic medal in microstate's history

San Marino is less than one fiftieth the area of Rhode Island and has a population smaller than the student body of Iowa State University. It is generally considered a microstate on the international stage, surrounded on all sides by Italy.

It just won an Olympic medal.

Shooter Alessandra Perilli won bronze in the women's trap shooting event on Wednesday, bringing Olympic glory to San Marino for the first time in the nation's history, which includes 24 Olympic appearances.

A historical moment!

San Marino win their first ever Olympic medal as Alessandra Perilli secures bronze in the #Shooting trap women's [email protected][email protected]

— Olympics (@Olympics) July 29, 2021

Zuzana Rehak Stefecekova of Slovakia took gold in the event with an Olympic record score of 43, while Team USA's Kayle Browning finished right behind her with 42 to win the silver medal.

The breakthrough is particularly sweet for the 33-year-old Perilli considering how close she came to making that exact same history nine years ago. 

In the 2012 Olympics, Perilli finished in a three-way tie for second place with Stefecekova and France's Delphine Reau. The trio then took part in a three-way shoot-off. Perilli missed first, knocking her and her country off the podium. She would later miss the finals in the 2016 Olympics.

Two olympiads and one pandemic delay later, Perilli has her medal. 

She isn't the only athlete to see unprecedented Olympic success for her country in Tokyo. Both the Philippines (55 kg weightlifting) and Bermuda (women's triathlon) won their first ever Olympic gold medals, with Bermuda now standing as the smallest country to ever capture gold at the Summer Olympics.

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