Gemima Joseph: a final stretch before the Paris Olympics, that of the “slots” race

Gemima Joseph: a final stretch before the Paris Olympics, that of the “slots” race
Gemima Joseph: a final stretch before the Paris Olympics, that of the “slots” race

It’s done ! Gemima Joseph became world vice-champion in the 4x100m relay in the Bahamas, a performance achieved with her teammates from the French team, Chloé Galet, Hélène Parisot and Mallory Leconte. A new qualification obtained for the Paris Olympics after his individual qualification for the Guyana Games in the 100 and 200 m. It now remains for the Guyanese champion and her staff to succeed in the “money race” to complete the budget for the final preparation 80 days before the Olympics.

Two and a half months before the Paris Olympic Games (July 26 to August 11), Gémima Joseph’s staff has still not finalized the budget for the preparation of the Guyanese athlete currently leaving for Jamaica for a week of training with Usain Bolt’s coach and competitions.

Gaëtan Tariaffe, one of the sprinter’s two coaches, is still on the tightrope a few hours before her departure for Jamaica:

“We are going to close the pot of 5,000 euros because we need availability, two Guyanese companies have made us funding promises of 5,000 and 8,000 euros and we are still waiting for subsidies from the communities. We have to make reservations, we had to cancel two courses and kept the one in Jamaica which is scheduled until May 15. Gemima will run on May 11 in the 200m at the international meeting in Jamaica with the best in the world. We will be at Kingston University. »

Immediately afterwards, the athlete is expected for the international meeting in Martinique on May 18. A dense program which will continue in France to prepare for the European Championships which take place in Rome, Italy from June 7 to 13 then return to France for the elite French championships from June 28 to 30 in Angers.

From 1er July the Gemima Joseph team will devote itself fully to preparing for the Olympic Games.

The Gordian knot of this trajectory remains the financing of recent months with a budget reduced by half and down to 80,000 euros. For Jamaica, payment of 10,000 euros will be made in several installments.

While the ultra marines shine and very often find themselves at the front of the stage, the preparation conditions are not optimal for them. If Katia Benth and Gaëtan Tariaffe wanted to successfully demonstrate that it was possible to achieve excellence by preparing at home far from official structures, the price to pay remains high in every sense of the word. Their ambition was to allow their athlete to compete against the world’s best and to train for this with them in the Caribbean and the United States. A strategy which has clearly borne fruit. But in this scheme, the French athletics federation cannot follow and provide more than the 3000 euros paid to the athlete. There are structures in France to prepare for the Olympic Games. French athletes are required to join the official affiliated centers and follow the programs of the coaches assigned there.
It is a general problem raised many times, that of the official existence of an FFA-certified preparation place in the Antilles-Guyana which would allow athletes to stay at home and continue to work in a very competitive American-Caribbean environment.




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