What could have happened on July 27
What does a first Olympic title hold? For the French triathlon, Vincent Luis’s gold medal owes a lot to the combined talents of the 2019 world champion, but also to an unfortunate stewardship error. When he parks his bike after the cycling event, the Frenchman is accompanied by two clients: the Spaniards Javier Gomez (silver medalist in London in 2012) and Mario Mola. Ten kilometers of racing still await the three triathletes, but after a few strides, the five-time world champion feels his feet cramped.
One glance is enough for Gomez to understand the problem: if he recognizes the pair of shoes, it is not his but Mola’s. He said a word to his compatriot and the two men hesitate on what to do next. Should they proceed to a change of shoes at the risk of letting Vincent Luis go or continue whatever the cost to their arches? « I do 43 and Mario 42, we thought we could finish with the other’s shoes », Gomez will tell.
Opportunist, the native of Vesoul widened a small gap in order to put doubt to the Spaniards considered better than him in running. Overwhelmed by his mishap, Mola will never return, but Gomez grits his teeth to pounce on Vincent Luis. Gomez wanted to see Vesoul again but especially felt horrible blisters seize him. Unable to sprint, he lets his opponent go for the title. It is finally the foot for the French triathlon which awaited its first Olympic medal since 1996. A little less for the manager of the Spanish team.
The Covid also deprived us …
… Mathieu van der Poel’s victory in mountain biking, despite a crash and a puncture on the first lap. On arrival, he has enough room to catch a Dutch flag and a French one in memory of Raymond Poulidor, his grandfather. Big emotion in Limousin.
… of Donald Trump moving in a tweet his diplomatic battle against China on the ground of table tennis: “I just saw a match between a Belgian and a Brazilian and both were actually Chinese. IS IT REALLY SERIOUS @CIO? “
… Seriously old. Misugu Okamoto, 14, becomes the first Olympic champion in skateboarding history. In the process, the Japanese announced her retirement in order to prepare for her entry into high school two years in advance.
She should have been there
Manon Brunet, 24, sabreuse (4e saber at the Olympics in 2016):
“I will be on vacation on July 27, but I have no idea where I’m going to go [l’entretien a été réalisé début juin]. I had not planned a vacation at the end of July this year. I was going to Tokyo to do two medals, individually and in teams. Whether it’s 2020 or 2021, it doesn’t change my goals. I’m only 24 years old and I tell myself that a one-year delay doesn’t penalize me too much.
I’ve never been to Tokyo and I don’t think we’ll be going to Japan before the Games. In fencing, a track remains a track, no matter the city or the country. We will train in the hall two or three days before.
When we learned that the Games were one year behind schedule, I was in a period where I was putting a little pressure on myself, telling myself that I was not ready, feeling the stress. I had difficulty regaining the level that had allowed me to win World Cup events. We will say that the postponement relaxed me a little [rires]. But Tokyo is still in my head, I think about it all the time. I keep having dreams where I find myself on the day of the competition.
In a match, the saber is a very random weapon. A poorly ranked shooter may come out one of the best, but she will not go all the way. I know it and it forces me to be ready to go. Compared to epee or foil, the keys scroll much faster and the slightest absence can be fatal. We can manage less. Even at 14-8, a game can very quickly turn the wrong way.
The saber arrived in 2000 for women and there has never been a French medal. If I can bring home the first individual or team, that would be great, but I especially want to bring back this medal for myself. “
It’s only at the Olympics that we see that
Zhang Shan, sharpshooter stronger than these gentlemen
At the Olympics, if a woman wants to compete with a man, she has to ride a horse. As in dressage where the title has not escaped these ladies since 1988. Horse riding therefore remains the only mixed sport on the program, that is to say in direct confrontations and not by teams made up of men and women. women as in some relays in swimming or athletics. During the Barcelona Games in 1992, the final in skeet shooting (ball-trap with moving targets, to sum up) created the event. For the first time, the event is open to both sexes.
China’s Zhang Shan caused a sensation in qualifying and the semi-finals. Out of 200 targets, she hits 200. In the final, she is surrounded by seven competitors and misses two targets out of 25 to shoot. But strong in her lead, she became Olympic champion and established a new world record.
Male pride is affected and the International Shooting Federation decides to abolish the mixed event four years later in Atlanta. Zhang Shan cannot defend his title, but even worse: only the men’s event is organized. The oblivion was repaired in 2000 and the female skeet entered the program this time. At the end of his career, Zhang Shan finished only 8e. Regardless, she remains for the moment the first and last mixed Olympic champion in shooting.
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