He wanted to take a step, Jean Quiquampoix did not waver. Vice-Olympic champion of the fast pistol at 25 m in 2016 in Rio on the occasion of his first Games, the Parisian shooter has picked up this afternoon in Tokyo, which he had come to pick up. Not content with offering himself the gold medal, the sixth in the French delegation, the reigning European champion also offered himself the luxury of equaling the Olympic record (34) of Cuban Lupo whom he beat for the title. A victory that he savored with restraint.

How do you feel with gold around the neck?

JEAN QUIQUAMPOIX . I am extremely relieved and happy. This medal is the culmination of hard work and a five-year goal. It was a lot of work and sacrifice. I am happy with the work accomplished. It’s a lot of emotions because we live for that, for this gold medal. When she arrives and we have worked like I did, it’s necessarily moving.

Yet do you feel calm, as if this title were programmed?

Programmed, no! But it’s true that every day I think about it, I imagine myself winning it … I’m extremely happy, but I don’t let my emotions show through. But, believe me, there is a lot of joy in me today.

How did you experienced the Marseillaise on the podium?

I had chills, it’s the first time tears come to me on a podium. This is to say the emotion that it gives.

What does the silver medal won in Rio mean to you today?

In a way, she boosted me. When you don’t win, you try to do better the next time. That was five years ago but since then I have been thinking every day about how to be better and ahead of my competition.

Is it hard to emotionally deal with the final duel, knowing that it cost you gold in Rio?

I knew that if I ensured the union minimum, he could not come back. In a way, the hard part was done. It was a deliverance, I did my series quietly, without too much pressure, without wanting to do too well, just ensuring a correct gesture. And that’s enough to stay ahead and take the gold.

Beyond the title, you go out also the last two Olympic champions, the Cuban Pupo (2012) and the German Reitz (2016) who had deprived you of the gold in Rio …

(he smiles). Yes, we can say that I mastered my final. I am really happy. Entering a competition in the costume of an Olympic champion is arguably not the easiest status to manage. Maybe that’s why he fished. I’m glad I had a good score, I’m happy with my performance.

You had announced coming for gold. Did you have any doubts when entering this final?

Yes, of course that there are doubts. You should never underestimate your opponents, until the last cartridge, nothing is done. I am confident, I have worked to make the exercise familiar to me, that I will master it, but I cannot predict in advance that I will win. The only confidence I can rely on is the confidence I have in my handling of events. Then we go step by step to the medal. My discipline is technically demanding. There is a lot of work up front to be calm with your emotions. Afterwards, we stay focused on technique and self-confidence. If these fundamentals are there, the automatisms speak and it goes.

How does it feel to be there sixth French gold medal?

It is a lot of pride to have carried high the colors of France and to add gold to the medal table. The race for medals is important for the visibility of the country. I’m very proud.

Are you looking towards Paris?

Yes of course, it’s only in three years, Paris is already in the back of my mind. I’m going to take some rest and then get back to work to win the gold medal in three years.

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