Clémence François, swimmer specializing in long distances, crossing lakes and kilometers in open water

Clémence François, swimmer specializing in long distances, crossing lakes and kilometers in open water

Clémence François s’entraîne au centre balnéaire Raoul Fonquerne à Sète et au centre aquatique de la Gardiole à Gigean. Midi Libre – KELMAN MARTI

Arriving in September in Sète, the specialist long-distance swimmer has set big goals this year. In the sights, in particular the crossing of Lakes Saint-Jean and (possibly) Lake Geneva.

"What sets her apart from the others is her unfailing mentality. She has incredible motivation." This "ironclad mental" described by her trainer Bertrand Venturi, Clémence François will need it this summer. Because the Neptune Olympique Frontignan swimmer sees things big for her 2024 open water season.

On the program: the 33 km separating Châteauneuf and Cognac from the “Flow des Gabarriers” in June, the crossing of Lake Saint-Jean in Canada and its 32 km in July, and finally (probably) the 70 km of Lake Geneva in Switzerland, which no French woman has ever never managed to finish.

"Setting goals to move forward"

"These are great challenges. I need to set big goals for myself to move forward in life. When I say something, I follow through", comments the athlete, after her endurance session from 7 h to 9 h.< /p>

This morning, the mild temperatures did not slow him down from doing the first 7.5 kilometers of his day at the Raoul Fonquerne swimming pool, before training afterwards -noon. In total with 60 km spread over six days a week, the Nantes woman swims more than she studies.

"I'm doing a BTS MCO (Operational commercial management) in Rennes, but I only have 4 hours of classes per day remotely. The most important thing is my professional future, swimming is a break. But the current formula allows me to train a lot and therefore to progress", explains with full maturity the one who is still only 20 years old.

The goal is above all to have fun

Already in good shape

It's also very humble that she looks forward to her future sporting events. "The goal remains to finish the races, and above all, to take pleasure. Performing well is a bonus, she adds.

For his trainer, "there is no doubt that it will succeed in achieving its objectives""L’ Last year, she completed 28km without much training. Currently, she is already in good shape and her competitions are in a few months", analyzes Bertrand Venturi.

The budget constraint

However, to complete a race, you still have to start. If his participation in “Flow des Gabarriers” and while the difficult crossing of Lake Saint-Jean is beyond doubt for her, that of Lake Geneva is uncertain. The reason ? A registration at 7 000 €.

"To have the necessary budget, I found a patron and I launched a fundraiser for the benefit of the association Eau de Rose, which organizes and finances aquagym classes for women affected by cancer. Part of the funds will be donated to this beautiful project, underlines the young woman. "In any case, if I can't do Lake Geneva this year, it will be next year", concludes Clémence François with confidence.

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