14th, France is already looking towards 2024 – Release

Tokyo Olympic Games 2021dossier

With 54 medals, the French delegation is doing better than expected but expects more from the next edition, which will be played at home.

The goal set before the Games – 35 podiums – lacked ambition, but the fact is that it was largely exceeded: the France team finished the Paralympic Games in Tokyo on Sunday with 54 medals on the clock, 11 in gold, 15 in silver and 28 in bronze. It takes the fourteenth place. China and its 96 medals finish at the top of the ranking, a position the country has occupied since 2004.

Alexandre Léauté, French star

It was the first of these Games to offer a gold medal to France. Para-cyclist Alexandre Léauté opened the ball on August 26 in the individual pursuit (category C2), before stringing together victories on the track by taking silver in the kilometer and then two bronze medals on the road. The 20-year-old Breton leaves with four medals and is already thinking about the next move. “I hope to be in Paris-2024. It will be in France, I will be expected, I think, with what I did this year ”, foresees who will carry the French flag during the closing ceremony in Tokyo this Sunday.

Confirmed success in tennis and table tennis

Already awarded gold in Rio in 2016, Stéphane Houdet and Nicolas Peifer repeated the feat in Tokyo in team wheelchair tennis, beating the British Alfie Hewett and Gordon Reid 7-5, 0-6, 7-6 (6 / 3). “For me, it is the most beautiful [victoire], because repeating is really strong ”, said Stéphane Houdet, 50, 23 Grand Slam singles and doubles titles and five Paralympic medals, including three gold, on the clock.

In table paratennis, Fabien Lamirault and Stéphane Molliens also won gold for the second time, this time beating Koreans Soo Yong Cha and Jin Cheol Park. Fabien Lamirault is already thinking about 2024, hoping to do so “Something crazy”, but Stéphane Molliens, who joined the France team in 2003, will not come back.

More ambitions for 2024

By setting a goal of 35 medals, the French delegation had played small arms. At issue: the health context. “This course was set because in Rio the France team came back with 28 medals. There had been a few more, 42, in London, explained the chef de mission of the French delegation and sports director of the French Paralympic and Sports Committee, Jean Minier. So we had fixed a number between the two with the National Sports Agency for lack of visibility on adversity because there were very few international meetings held during the pandemic. ” New ambition for 2024, for the Games to be played at home: 60 medals for the French.

To achieve this, the Minister of Sports, Roxana Maracineanu, particularly wants the Olympic and Paralympic circles to come together. “We must help old and new to meet Olympic athletes more. To talk, to train perhaps also with coaches from the Olympic side to be able to form this truly unified French team, she defended at a press conference in Tokyo on Sunday. We must pool what is happening in the Olympic federations, particularly in terms of human resources, so that Paralympism benefits more. ”



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