This time it’s really gone to Tokyo, we are talking more about sport than about Covid.
The fireworks have fallen, the medal medal can begin: the day after the opening ceremony, the Chinese Qian Yang won the first title of the Tokyo Olympic Games on Saturday, in rifle shooting.
The Chinese gave herself this moment of fame by dominating in the very last shot the Russian Anastasia Galashina, who plays under the neutral flag due to the suspension of Russia for doping. This title is the first of 339 that will be awarded in total during the Games, and the first also of this day on Saturday where 11 gold medals are at stake.
Océanne Muller not far from the feat
The Frenchwoman Océanne Muller, 18, was not far from the feat, but finally finished 5th.
Also on the program this Saturday, sports that make the salt of the Olympic Games: archery, judo, fencing and weightlifting.
But also taekwondo, and a first big meeting, with the road cycling road race.
As soon as the Tour de France is finished on the Champs Elysées, all eyes are on the Slovenian Tadej Pocagar, double winner of the Grande Boucle at just 22 years old.
The 234 km course, near Mount Fuji, looks like a big and beautiful mountain stage on the Tour, with in particular five climbs on the program, 4,800 m of elevation gain. The peloton set off at the end of the morning in a hot and humid climate and in front of a fairly large crowd along the route.
The justice of the peace will be the Mikuni pass (10 km at 10.6% average with passages at 20%), the penultimate difficulty of the day. The last crossing, at the Kagosaka pass, is 18 km from the finish, judged at the Fuji International Speedway, once used by F1.
Besides Pogacar and his compatriot Primoz Roglic, the favorites are Belgians (Wout van Aert, Remco Evenepoel) and the French are outsiders (David Gaudu). Arrival should take place around 4:30 p.m. local (9:30 a.m. French, 7:30 a.m. GMT).
The day will also be marked by the first fights in judo, in his native country, a highlight of the Olympics.
It is here, in Tokyo in 1964, during the first Tokyo Olympics, in this same mythical hall of the Nippon Budokan, that this martial art made its Olympic debut, quite a symbol.
Under the eyes of Emmanuel Macron, Shirine Boukli (-48 kg) was beaten in the first round by the Serbian Milica Nikolic. Boukli had tumbled last year at the highest level and was one of those athletes who would not have been in Tokyo last year, and who benefited from the postponement of a year to invite themselves. For the men, Luka Mkheidze will be the French representative in the -60 kg category.
In archery, Lisa Barbelin and Jean-Charles Valladont are engaged in mixed doubles, and have perhaps the best chances of reaching a podium on Saturday.
But fencing, the main provider of medals for France in the history of the Olympic Games (almost a third of the medals in total), is also on the bill, with the women’s individual épée (Coraline Vitalis, eliminated in the first round) and the men’s saber with Boladé Apithy.
So, for whom will the first French medal of the Tokyo Games be?