Don't miss




France's Macron likens divisions within EU to 'civil war'

Read more


Sting and Shaggy on making musical magic together

Read more


The citizens finding solutions to Lebanon's chronic waste crisis

Read more


Head of UN entity probing war crimes in Syria speaks to FRANCE 24

Read more


The future of work: How the gig economy is changing the jobs market

Read more


'France has underinvested in early childhood education for many years'

Read more


'Badass': Accolades pour in for Southwest pilot who landed plane after engine failure

Read more


Emmanuel Macron in Berlin: Will Europe's superhero succeed?

Read more


Violence in DR Congo's Ituri Province forces thousands to live in camps

Read more

Sports france 24

Hollande welcomes Team France Olympians at the Elysée presidential palace

© Etienne Laurent, Pool, AFP | France’s Olympic athletes pose with French President François Hollande (centre) and French Prime Minister Manuel Valls (at right) after being welcomed by Hollande at the Elysée Palace.

Video by FRANCE 24

Text by FRANCE 24

Latest update : 2016-08-23

France’s Olympic team returned home on Tuesday where they received a hero’s welcome at the Elysée presidential palace in Paris after winning a total of 42 medals – 10 of them gold – at the Rio Games.

The athletes arrived at Charles de Gaulle airport earlier on Tuesday, greeted by dozens of cheering fans.

France won 10 gold, 18 silver and 14 bronze medals in Rio, making this Olympics its most successful since the 2008 Beijing Games.

Later in the day the Olympians were received by President François Hollande at the Elysée Palace.

Judo legend Teddy Riner, who won his second gold medal at the games, expressed his excitement at being welcomed home by the president.

“It’s also a reward to have the opportunity to be received at the Elysée, it was hard-earned. Thanks to the chief of state for bestowing us with this honour,” Riner told reporters.

The record eight-time world judo champion had gone six years undefeated before beating second-ranked Hisayoshi Harasawa of Japan on penalties in the final match of the +100kg category in Rio.

He also took gold in London in 2012 and bronze in Beijing in 2008.

Riner has now won his last 58 matches at European championships, world championships and Olympic Games combined in the +100kg category.

Golden couple

Estelle Mossely, the first French woman to win a gold medal in boxing, was also at the Elysée alongside her fiancé, boxer Tony Yoka, who won gold in the men’s super heavy (+91kg) competition.

“It’s an incredible feeling, we’ve made it, we’ve come back with two gold medals … We are proud to have represented France at its best,” Mossely said.

“We didn’t think we’d both be here at the Elysée,” Yoka added. “In 2012 I didn’t come because I was frustrated. I hadn’t won a medal and I told myself I would return in four years with a beautiful medal.”

"It's incredible, this story," Yoka said after his gold win on Sunday. "We dreamed about competing in the Olympics as a couple. And we dreamed about winning medals, or even gold medals. And now we've done it. Incredible."

Yoka said that he had received strict instructions from Mossely before the match.

"Estelle just said: 'I've done my job, you do yours'. It was my turn. I couldn't fail,'" he said.

(FRANCE 24 with AFP)

Date created : 2016-08-23


    Russia banned from Rio Paralympics after losing appeal over doping scandal

    Read more

  • 2016 OLYMPICS

    France's Yoka wins super-heavyweight boxing gold

    Read more


    Birthday girl Estelle Mossely is France’s first female to win boxing gold

    Read more