One plunged virtually routinely into the Tokyo basin. The opposite jumped into the unknown. Placed on the blue-white-red cap, greet the digicam, climb on the pedestal, at 46, David Smétanine is aware of the routine of a Paralympic Video games finalist by coronary heart. For the reason that Athens Video games in 2004, the Grenoblois has by no means missed the quadrennial assembly. Nor the chance to convey again one – generally a number of – Paralympic medal.
For Ugo Didier, this can be a first. As a result of if the tricolor swimmer of 19 years monopolizes the worldwide podiums of the final 5 years – three medals on the world championships (together with one in gold in 2017) and 6 others on the European championships in particular person (together with three in gold) -, Tokyo should change its scope.
The member of the Cugnaux Swimmers Circle (Haute-Garonne) is known as upon to turn into the spearhead of the brand new technology, the one which, with a view to the Video games in Paris in 2024 specifically, should breathe new life into French para-swimming. As a result of it has misplaced its luster lately.
If it’s the largest supplier of French medals on the Paralympic Video games (greater than 330 metals for the reason that Rome Video games in 1960), the French para-swimming crew returned empty-handed from Rio 4 years in the past. And within the two earlier editions, she had gained solely 4 medals (two in Beijing, in 2008, two in London, in 2012).
Since 2016, the French para-swimming started to vary. In Tokyo, it depends on a younger delegation: the common age – if we exclude its two “historic” champions Claire Supiot (53) and David Smétanine – is lower than 22 years.
Ugo Didier in quest of gold
Within the area of some days, in Tokyo, Ugo Didier, who has been competing in disabled sports activities since 2014, has turn into the chief of the Blues ” by setting an instance, by his working strategies and by the bon vivant that he’s ”, assures his coach, Samuel Chaillou. ” He’s somebody who in a short time capitalizes on every part he learns ”, provides the latter in regards to the one who immerses himself as much as 25 hours per week and can also be a scholar on the Nationwide Institute of Utilized Sciences (INSA) in Toulouse.
Ugo Didier arrived in Japan with excessive ambitions: to win three titles, within the three disciplines wherein he’s concerned. For the second, after two races, his file is “leaner”. He first gained, Wednesday, August 25, a silver medal within the 400 m freestyle within the S9 class (athletes with disabilities within the arms are restricted of their propulsion and injury to the decrease limbs make pushes tough), being inserted between the Australians William Martin and Alexander Tuckfield.
As common – and like his idol, the sprinter Christophe Lemaitre – he got here again like a bomb within the final pitches after being left behind through the sink. “His weak factors are the beginning and the turns, as a result of he has instability in his knee and only a few muscular tissues in his legs”, explains Samuel Chaillou.
Born with membership toes and atrophy of the decrease limbs, the Haut-Garonnais compensates by a excessive frequency of arms. He additionally broke his private finest by virtually 4 seconds, securing the European file within the self-discipline.
For his second race, Monday August 30, the tricolor swimmer failed to overcome bronze for… 4 hundredths within the 100m backstroke closing, gained by Russian Bogdan Mozgovoi. Lucid, Ugo Didier reacted after the race:
“I miss a bit at the beginning, a bit on the flip and quite a bit within the swim. That may function a lesson for me subsequent time. “
Wednesday 1er September, he has one final probability to climb onto the highest step of the rostrum. The Frenchman is lined up for the 200m medley (sequence at 2:50 a.m., Paris time, closing at 11:30 a.m.), an occasion he gained on the European Championships in Funchal (Portugal) in February, by beating the European file.
Nathan Maillet to jot down an tailored swimming web page
Nathan Maillet shall be on Thursday, September 2 (three hours in Paris), at the beginning of the 100 m backstroke, the second and final occasion he’ll compete in Tokyo. At 22 years outdated, the one who’s the one consultant of the French crew of tailored para-swimming (particular to swimmers with mental disabilities) additionally figures this succession of the self-discipline.
If a podium appears inaccessible for the swimmer from Loudun (Vienna) – who additionally discovers the Video games – it might match the efficiency of Alicia Mandin, the one French swimmer in tailored sport to have climbed to the ultimate of the Paralympic Video games (on the 100m breaststroke), in London in 2012.
For this, Nathan Maillet must benefit from his wingspan (2 m 10) and swim “in amplitude”, that’s to say make much less arm actions to restrict his vitality expenditure. What’s attempting to instill in him Bertrand Sebire, the nationwide coach on the France Para-swimming tailored pole, in Vichy (Allier). What the swimmer did not do on Friday August 27 within the 200m freestyle: the strain was too nice and he was eradicated within the heats. “He was on the Video games and he needed to do too effectively”, notes Bertrand Sebire.
Overwhelmed by feelings, the swimmer from the Affiliation sportive des nageurs loudunais (ASNL) affected by autism spectrum problems (ASD), didn’t handle to boost his stage. “He should turn into conscious of what he might have executed on the entrance crawl and restore his confidence”, Bertrand Sebire stated after the race.
Anybody who is aware of the occasions achieved by French swimmers just like the again of their hand didn’t fail to attend, Friday, August 27, the ultimate of the 400 m freestyle of Alex Portal concluded with a bronze medal. On Thursday he could possibly be impressed by his compatriot, who, at 19, additionally gained a medal silver on the 200m medley, Monday August 30.