The French adaptive rowing (or para-rowing) team has started its paralympic season: the start of a year that should see French rowers mount the Olympic podiums.
The target is the Tokyo Paralympic Games in August next year. And with 3 boats already qualified, there’s a good chance of winning medals. Indeed, as the particularity of rowing is that the qualification concerns the boats and not specific athletes, the rowers who compete may not be the same as those who ensured the boats were selected. Charles Delval, the coach of the French adaptive rowing team, is fully aware of this. “Performance is always our principal objective but our first concern is to put a team together. We have to find the athletes. In adaptive rowing, it can happen that athletes suddenly turn up and reach the level of the others very quickly.”
For Charles Delval: “In para-rowing, we are looking further ahead to Paris 2024. Our goal is to put up a fine performance at home. We're pursuing two objectives: striving to be highly competitive with our best rowers, and looking to recruit new athletes. But above all, we're trying to create a spirit of emulation so that, in the end, we can bring out the very best.”