POSTED: December 1st 2016

French Olympic and Paralympic medalists from Rio 2016 honored at Elysee Palace

French Olympian and Paralympian Rio 2016 medal winners honored at special celebration © Paris 2024
French Olympian and Paralympian Rio 2016 medal winners honored at special celebration © Paris 2024

MARISSA FLANDERS (USA) / Sports Features Communications

(SFC) A special celebration was held at the Elysee Palace to mark Team France's record-breaking performance at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games. The President of the French Republic, Francois Hollande was joined by French Olympians and Paralympians who won medals at the Rio 2016 Summer Games.

"I would like to congratulate all of our Olympians and Paralympians for their fantastic performances at Rio 2016. Their hunger and desire to compete at the very best of their ability for their country is a huge inspiration to us all. Their passion, spirit, and enthusiasm will continue to spur us on as we aim to bring the Olympic and Paralympic Games to Paris in 2024," expressed President Hollande.

Paris 2024 Athletes' Committee Co-Chairs, Teddy Riner, and Marie-Amélie Le Fur led the athlete delegation at the celebration. Also, the Paris 2024 Bid Committee was also present to pay tribute to the achievements of Team France's efforts at the Rio 2016 Olympics and Paralympics.

Riner stated, "It is amazing to be here at the Elysee Palace with my fellow Olympians and Paralympians for a great celebration of our record-breaking achievements at Rio 2016. It is every athlete's dream to compete at the Olympic Games, so to compete at a home Games would be truly incredible. The Paris 2024 bid has huge support from France's athlete community and the national sports movement will continue to put their collective energy into bringing the Games to Paris and delivering a spectacular celebration of sport and Olympism in 2024."

Those representing Paris 2024 included: Paris 2024 Co-Chairman, Bernard Lapasset; Paris 2024 CEO and Olympian, Etienne Thobois; Paris 2024 Deputy CEO, Michaël Aloïsio; Paris 2024 Sports Director and double Olympic medalist, Jean-Philippe Gatien; and Paris 2024 Advisor and Olympic Champion, Thierry Rey.

"This wonderful celebration of elite sporting performance and Olympic values fills us with inspiration and fuels even further our ambition to deliver a thrilling Games of passion and purpose with real benefits for Paris, France and the rest of the world in 2024. The athletes are the heartbeat of the Olympic and Paralympic Games and this is why we have made them the architects of the bid. We will continue to harness their ideas, energy, and drive as we fine-tune our bid plans," commented Chairman Lapasset.

He went on to say, "I would like to thank President Hollande for welcoming us here today. Following the President's attendance in Rio to visit the athletes and support our bid, this celebration is further proof of the top-down, cross-party political commitment from the French government towards the Olympic Movement, the Paris 2024 bid and elite sport across the country."

Team France brought home 42 medals, including 10 gold. While 28 medals were won during the Rio 2016 Paralympics, which included nine gold. A record-breaking total of 396 French athletes competed at the Rio 2016 Olympics, while 126 French Paralympians competed during the Rio 2016 Paralympics.

** MARISSA FLANDERS is a graduate of Saint Leo University with a Bachelor's Degree in Sport Business. She has over four years of writing experience and has a real passion for ice hockey following the Pittsburgh Penguins on her blog

Keywords · Paris 2024 · Team France · Olympics · Paralympics · Rio 2016 · Olympic bidding

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