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In Châtenay-Malabry, a sports incubator modernized to train future Olympic medalists

On to games, and beyond. The Île-de-France Sports Expertise and Performance Resource Center (Creps IDF) is in full preparation for the Paris Olympic and Paralympic Games. The site, located in Châtenay-Malabry (Hauts-de-Seine) welcomes around 250 high-level athletes each year, whom it supports in their training and education. It is also the largest training center for sports professions in France. It will be the subject of major modernization work which will benefit athletes during the Olympics, but also well after.

When it came under regional supervision in 2016, the center had already received 10 million euros from the Ile-de-France Region. He then had his field hockey pitch redone, extended his health center and renovated accommodation and sports halls, particularly in terms of sound and heat.

Larger and more modern equipment

Today, it is an additional envelope of 32 million euros that Creps will be able to use for its work. On the program: construction of administrative buildings, a larger dining room and a new reception. The weight room and the two gymnasiums will be renovated and the training rooms will increase from twelve to twenty. Infrastructure will be more suitable for people with reduced mobility, and therefore for certain Paralympic athletes.

Enough to attract high-level French and foreign athletes. In December, the Creps, installed in a 17-hectare park, was labeled Center for the preparation of the JOP 2024. From the summer of 2022, the delegations which will take part in the Olympiad will be able to come and train there or take advantage of the accommodation. The site has the advantage of being thirty minutes from ten Olympic sites and twelve disciplines can be practiced on site such as combat sports, beach volleyball, archery or fencing.

Michel Godard, director of Creps IDF already sees beyond 2024. “These resources are released because the JOPs are coming. We are going to use this lever to do as much modernization work as possible, which will then benefit top athletes,” he explains.

20 Creps athletes medalists at the next Olympics

Among the athletes currently supported by Creps, about twenty can claim to participate in the Olympic Games. The objective is to increase their number. In September 2021, a “Maison de la performance” was inaugurated at Creps. It aims to improve the preparation of Olympic and Paralympic athletes through extensive medical, physical and mental support and professional follow-up. A similar structure must open in each French region.

“For 2024, the effects will be moderate, it was created a little late, we do not determine three years before a future Olympic athlete, it takes rather 6 or 7 years. But it will be useful for the following, ”said Michel Godard. At the last Summer Olympics in Tokyo, 15 French medalists, including two Paralympians, passed through Creps, in particular Olympic karate champion Steven Da Costa and foil fencer Astrid Guyart (team silver). “The objective is to go up to 20, or even more”, hopes the director of Creps.

In the meantime, the athletes will have to adapt to the work of the Creps: they start next July for 18 months.

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