'We need to perform at the right time', says French team manager
As the Winter Olympics starts in Vancouver, Fabien Saguez, manager of France's national Skiing Federation, tells france24.com about French medal prospects.
FRANCE 24: In Alpine skiing, strong recent performances from Julien Lizeroux, Sandrine Aubert as well as the rest of team show that team spirit is good...
Fabien Saguez: Yes, we definitely are in a positive cycle, the season has been good so far with a lot of podiums. However, these good results do not guarantee Olympic medals. We need to perform at the right time. The weather conditions can also play a major role.
F24: The good start this season followed a great loss: Jean-Baptiste Grange (injured). Do you think the team became stronger because of this disappointment?
F.S: No, the group was already very close before. Of course, we are sorry for Jean-Baptiste, we all wish he was here among us. But we all know injuries are part of the sport and it did not break the spirit of the group. Our strength comes from the work done these last three years.
F24: Biathlon may bring a positive surprise. How many medals can France’s ski team bring back?
F.S: That’s true, French biathlon give us some great hope. But we shouldn’t get ahead of ourselves, the team has great potential but is still very young and probably weaker than the team which competed in Turin 2006. We should capitalise on the four medals won in the World championships in 2009. In the end, if we bring back 8 to 10 medals, this Canadian campaign would be a success.