Philibert-Thiboutot relieved of his financial worries

Philibert-Thiboutot relieved of financial worries


Charles Philibert-Thiboutot received his Christmas present earlier than expected.

The middle distance runner and Rio 2016 Olympian has regained his Sports Canada funding card which Athletics Canada had withdrawn from him for the past two years, believing he did not have the potential to reach a final at the Games or World Championship. 

“It's a big burden that falls off my shoulders,” Thiboutot said. I have had to make sacrifices over the past few years and my sponsors New Balance and Premier Tech have kept my head above water. Last year, the Quebecer was unable to qualify for the Tokyo Games. 

“ Athletics Canada doubted my abilities. It was difficult to understand after the decision in 2021, but I decided to bet on myself and give it my all,” explained Philibert-Thiboutot.

In his preparation for the next major events, the runner will now have peace of mind. 

” I will be able to prepare without financial worries for the next World Cup and the 2024 Games in Paris. In addition to the monthly salary of $1,700 which is not taxable, I will be entitled to a budget for expenses for competitions of $10,000 for the year. »

A decisive world

It was at the world championship held last July in Eugene, Oregon, that the 1500 m specialist felt the wind turned. 

“ I was dominant in the preliminary round and I only missed the final by 0 s 08 in a semifinal that some experts said was the strongest wave in history, he explained. During the camp preceding the worlds, Athletics Canada also saw my professionalism and the seriousness of my preparation. 

“They realized that I had a chance to qualify for an Olympic final and they added me to the national team program,” added Philibert-Thiboutot. I don't hold grudges and I'm preparing. 

Furthermore, his limited financial means have put his health at risk. 

“Last December, I had foot pain and needed to fly to Vancouver for treatment from my physiotherapist, but I didn't go because I couldn't afford it,” he said. -he tells. There would have been financial consequences if I had gone there. Two weeks later I suffered a grade 3 calf tear. The lack of resources had a direct impact on my injury. »

In a good position

Félix-Antoine Lapointe's protege saw a difference as recently as a few weeks ago. 

“I felt pain in one foot and immediately took a flight to Vancouver,” he said. . That's the difference it makes. When there is a glitch, you react quickly. I am now at one hundred percent and I can train thoroughly. 

With this financial support, Philibert-Thiboutot believes that he finds himself in an excellent position. 

“If I stay healthy, I'm in a good position to qualify for Paris. I'm ranked 35th in the world and you have to finish in the top 55. It's a change from 2021 where I started the selection process with no results in the bank. I felt like I was swimming against the current.