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Nine new medals were added to the French team’s roster at the Paralympic Games on Saturday, including a gold for Alexis Hanquinquant in the triathlon and a silver for Marie-Amélie Le Fur in the long jump.
Cascade of medals for France. Nine new charms adorned the table of the French team at the Paralympic Games on Saturday August 28, including one gold, won by Alexis Hanquinquant in the triathlon, and one silver obtained by Marie-Amélie Le Fur.
Triple reigning world and European champion, Hanquinquant, for his first Games, assumed his role of favorite in the PTS4 category and offered France its third Paralympic title, while setting the tone for a generous day in medals. .
“The plan went perfectly”, relishes the Norman of 35 years, amputated of the right leg below the knee following an accident at work on a building site in 2010. He was then champion of France of boxing full contact for the able-bodied.
“The best strategy was to attack. When I get out of the water and I’m told 25 seconds apart, I tell myself that it’s really a good day”, describes the triathlete, who relegated to nearly four minutes his Japanese pursuer Hideki Uda, after 750 m of swimming, 20 km of cycling and 5 km of running.
The distance also smiled on Annouck Curzillat, 29 years old. The visually impaired triathlete took the bronze medal (PTVI category) with her guide Céline Bousrez, at the finish, for two small seconds. She climbs for the first time on an international podium.
Bet won for Marie-Amélie Le Fur
As for Marie-Amélie Le Fur, she won her bet to win a ninth medal for her fifth Games. Holder of the title in the long jump (category T64), the president of the French Paralympic and Sports Committee (CPSF) came close to keeping it with a last jump to 6.11 meters, too short of only five centimeters.
On the Izu velodrome track, already providing four podiums since the start of the Games, the duo formed by Raphaël Beaugillet and the seven-time world champion in the able-bodied, François Pervis, took the bronze medal for the tandem kilometer for 82/100es.
“Finally!”, Savored the visually impaired cyclist. “And thank you to François for joining the project. Today, we have become one.”
Table tennis players in force
But the bulk of the day’s medals came from table tennis with one silver and four bronze. The most beautiful of the five was won by the youngest of the French delegation, Léa Ferney, 17 years old.
After dominating the Japanese Maki Ito (3-0), who played at home in the semifinals, Ferney lost in the final against Russia’s Elena Prokofeva (3-1).
At the other end of the experience scale, Thu Kamkasomphou, 52, scored a sixth individual podium (Class 8) in six Games. She started her Paralympic adventure in 2000 with a title in Sydney (in Class 9 at the time).
As in Rio, wheelchair table tennis player Maxime Thomas also took third place in individual (Class 4), his fourth Paralympic medal added to those obtained by teams.
It was imitated by Lucas Créange, who gleaned his first medal in Class 11, dedicated to cognitive disability, and by Anne Barnéoud: aphasic and hemiplegic on the right side since a stroke at four years old, she won her first individual medal. (Class 7), after a bronze medal obtained by teams in Beijing, in 2008.