French athletes join Paris 2024 delegation in Marseille

By Robert Fawdon, Marseille, France, 25 April 2016 : The following athletes, several of whom are Olympians and Olympic Champions, joined the senior Paris 2024 delegation in Marseille today to visit the stunning Marina Marseille – the proposed Sailing venue for the 2024 Games:

• Xavier Rohart, Sailing – four-time Olympian and Olympic Bronze Medallist at Athens 2004, two-time World Champion and Sailor of the Year 2004
• Dimitri Deruelle, Sailing – two-time Olympian at Barcelona 1992 and Sydney 2000a and two-time World Champion
• Lise Vidal, Sailing (Windsurfing) – Olympian at Sydney 2000
• Olivier Backes, Sailing – Olympian at Athens 2004, two-time World Champion and two-time European Champion
• Florent Manaudou, Swimming – Olympic Champion in 50m Freestyle at London 2012, four-time World Champion and nine-time European Champion
• Camille Lacourt, Swimming – four-time World Champion and three-times European Champion
• Fabien Gilot, Swimming – Olympic Champion in 4x100m Freestyle, three-time World Champion and two-time European Champion
• Frederick Bousquet, Swimming – Olympic Silver Medallist in 4x100m Freestyle at Beijing 2008 and eight-time World Champion – Rio will be his 4th Olympic Games
• Denis Gargaud, Canoe – World Champion in C1, will make his Olympic debut at Rio
• Virginie Dedieu, Synchronized Swimming – Four-time Olympian and Olympic Bronze Medallist at Sydney 2000
• Nathalie Benoit, Paralympic Rowing – Silver Medallist at London 2012
• Coraline Jonet, Sailing

The delegation also visited the proposed Marseille city centre live site and joined by the Mayor of Marseille, the Paris 2024 leadership held a Board Meeting at the Palais du Pharo.

Speaking about the visit from an athlete perspective Xavier Rohart, four-time Olympian and Olympic Bronze Medallist in Star Class at Athens 2004, said:

“It’s great to be here in Marseille to see first-hand the venue plans for Olympic Sailing in 2024. This is a ready-made, world-class venue with an excellent track record in hosting national and international Sailing events, including the 2002 ISAF World Games. The views across the Marina are stunning and the conditions are perfect for Olympic Sailing. This location will offer athletes the best opportunity to produce amazing performances as they go for Olympic Gold.”

Lise Vidal, Olympian in Windsurfing at Sydney 2000, said:
“Marseille is my home city and I am proud to say that the Marina will be a wonderful setting for Olympic sport. The facilities now also include a wonderful Sailing centre which is open to the public for training and leisure and the state-of-the-art hub is also the home of the French National Sailing Team. Marseille already benefits hugely from the wonderful centre and hosting Olympic Sailing and Football here will do even more for the community.”

Florent Manaudou, Olympic Swimming Champion in 50m Freestyle at London 2012, said:
“Regardless of their sport, Olympians are the heart and soul of the Olympic Games and the meticulous planning and attention to detail shown by the Paris 2024 delegation here in Marseille underlines the bid’s commitment to the athletes. It’s fantastic that Marseille will play a key role in the 2024 Games and it’s great to get a feel for the Games plan outside of Paris. As an athlete it’s inspiring to know that all the whole nation will be firmly behind Team France.”

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