I have read the following sentence on https://www.wordreference.com/iten/traguardo:

Lucia ha tagliato il traguardo per seconda ed è potuta salire sul podio.

If I understood correctly, "tagliare il traguardo" means "to come in first place" because usually there is a ribbon at the finish line in running races that the winner "cuts" when he/she crosses it. However, that doesn't make sense for people that come after the winner because there is no ribbon to cut anymore, so the sentence above sounds weird to me. Can the expression above be used for any person that reaches the finish line, regardless of position?


1 Answer 1


your intuition is correct, that is, the literal meaning of "tagliare il traguardo" is to finish first and consequently cut the rope at the end of the race.

In this case Lucia "crosses the finish line" in the sense that she reaches the end of the race. As you have guessed, in this case the position of the runner is not calculated but only that it has reached the end of the race.

Being Italian I tell you that the Italian language depends a lot on the context in which it is spoken.

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