Laura Flessel-Colovic

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Laura Flessel-Colovic
Laura Flessel-Colovic, Team trophy presentation Challenge international de Saint-Maur 2013 t161426.jpg
Minister of Sports
In office
17 May 2017 – 4 September 2018
Prime Minister Édouard Philippe
Preceded by Patrick Kanner
Succeeded by Roxana Maracineanu
Personal details
Born (1971-11-06) 6 November 1971 (age 46)
Petit-Bourg, France
Spouse(s) Denis Colovic
Children 1
Weapon(s) épée
Hand left-handed
Height 1.70 m (5 ft 7 in)
Weight 60 kg (132 lb)
Personal coach(es) Daniel Levavasseur
Retired 2012
FIE ranking archive

Laura Flessel-Colovic (born 6 November 1971) is a French politician and épée fencer who served as Minister of Sports from 2017 to 2018. Born in in Pointe-à-Pitre, Guadeloupe, she has won the most Olympic medals of any French sportswoman, with five. Before 2007, she was a member of the Levallois Sporting Club Escrime, and now works with Lagardère Paris Racing.[3] She is married and has one daughter.

She was France's flag-bearer at the 2012 Summer Olympics opening ceremony in London, which was her fifth and last Olympics.[4]

She was appointed Minister of Sports in the Philippe Government on 17 May 2017[5] and resigned on 4 September 2018.

Sporting career

Fencer

Laura Flessel began fencing at age six and quickly became a very talented fencer. She progressed quickly and became champion of Guadeloupe. Then, she gained solid experience on the Caribbean, Central American and Pan American circuits, winning in 1990 the Pan American Championships in foil and epee. The same year, she joined the metropolis, to train with the Racing Club de France. She also trains within the INSEP, which allows her to face the best French fencers.

She won her first world stage success in 1995, finishing in third place at the Hague World Championships. This bronze medal is accompanied by a silver medal in the team event, which was defeated 45 to 44 by Hungary. Her teammates were Valérie Barlois, Sophie Moressee and Sangita Tripathi.[6]

After her gold medal at the 1996 Summer Olympics and her victory at 1998 World Cup, she became the eighth French fencer, and first woman, to win the Olympic and World Champion titles.[7] She is one of the favorites for the 2000 Summer Olympics title. She finally fails in the semi-final against Timea Nagy. At the 2006 World Championships in Turin, she gets a new individual bronze medal, beaten again by Timea Nagy[8]

The 2008 Summer Olympics, her fourth Olympic Games, marks a turning point as it is the first Olympics where she does not get a medal after being eliminated by Li Na (15-9) in the quarter-finals. The year 2009 sees again Laura Flessel at the top but still without success with a third place at the European Championships in Plovdiv [9] and a failure at the World Championships in Antalya where she lost f in quarter final against Lyubov Shutova after a close match that ends in sudden death on the score of 7 to 8.

On 21 April 2012, she qualifies for the individual event of the London Olympics by defeating Emma Samuelsson in the semifinals of the European Zone Qualifying Championship in Bratislava.[10] On May 14, 2012, Laura Flessel is officially designated flag bearer of the French delegation for the London Olympics.[11] In her final competition, she defeated Courtney Hurley (15-12) before losing to Simona Gherman (No. 4 worldwide) 15-13. She ends her career at the age of 40.[12]

Controversy

Laura Flessel was banned for three months in 2002 after failing a doping test. She tested positive for the banned substance coramine glucose, blaming the French team doctors for giving her a drug that is available over the counter in France.[13]

Sports management

In 2012, she took over the management of Nathalie Moellhausen, a native of Italy and competing under the colors of Brazil, forming a group also composed of two fencing masters, Daniel Levavasseur and Michel Sicard, the latter having both coached Flessel.[14]

Sports consultant and other activities

Media and television

Laura Flessel in 2012

In 2008, Laura Flessel was a columnist for the daily newspaper Aujourd'hui Sport.

She was a contestant on the third season of Danse avec les stars.[15]

During the 2016 Summer Olympics she commented, on Canal +, the opening ceremony with Stéphane Guy and Joris Sabi, the fencing events with Frédéric Roullier and the closing ceremony with Julien Fébreau and Jean Galfione.[16]

Community life

She is ambassador of the AMREF Flying Doctors' Stand Up for African Mothers campaign, the godmother of Handicap International, and Ambassador of Plan France. His long-term project is to bring fencing to disadvantaged cities and places. She is also a goodwill ambassador for UNESCO where she promotes tolerance in sports.

She founded the association Ti'Colibri which aims to promote fencing. Thanks to its action, it has been able to offer means and equipment to clubs with few resources.[17]

Political career

During the two-rounds of the French presidential election of 2017, she was one of the sixty active or retired sportsmen who signed a call to vote for Emmanuel Macron on May 7, 2017 in the second round of the presidential election "so that sport remains an area of freedom, equality and fraternity."[18]

On May 17, 2017, she was appointed Minister of Sports in the First Philippe government, under the presidency of Emmanuel Macron, a position she held in the Second Philippe government, which was formed on June 21, 2017.[19]

The government's second most popular minister at the end of 2017, she is notably responsible for preparing the organization of the 2024 Summer Olympics. At the beginning of 2018, she launched a campaign against discrimination in the sporting world, with as ambassadors Antoine Griezmann, Estelle Mossely, Marie-Amélie Le Fur, Frédéric Michalak, Emmeline Ndongue and Florent Manaudou.[20]

Honours

  • Summer Olympics
    • Gold Medal in individual épée in 1996
    • Gold Medal in team épée in 1996
    • Silver Medal in individual épée in 2004
    • Bronze Medal in individual épée in 2000
    • Bronze Medal in team épée in 2004
  • World Championships
    • Gold Medal in individual épée in 1998
    • Gold Medal in team épée in 1998
    • Gold Medal in individual épée in 1999
    • Gold Medal in team épée in 2005
    • Gold Medal in team épée in 2008
    • Silver Medal in team épée in 1995
    • Silver Medal in individual épée in 2001
    • Silver Medal in team épée in 2006
    • Bronze Medal in individual épée in 1995
    • Bronze Medal in team épée in 1997
    • Bronze Medal in individual épée in 2005
    • Bronze Medal in individual épée in 2006
  • World Cup Fencing
    • World Cup winner individual épée in 2002, 2003 and 2004
    • World Cup runner-up individual épée in 1997

References

  1. ^ "Olympics Statistics: Laura Flessel-Colovic". databaseolympics.com. Archived from the original on 26 October 2012.
  2. ^ Evans, Hilary; Gjerde, Arild; Heijmans, Jeroen; Mallon, Bill. "Laura Flessel-Colovic". Olympics at Sports-Reference.com. Sports Reference LLC.
  3. ^ "Lagardère – Communiqués de presse". Lagardere.com. Retrieved 14 August 2012.
  4. ^ "Fencer Flessel to be France's Olympic flag-bearer". NDTV. Agence France-Presse. 15 May 2012.
  5. ^ Grégoire Clavel (17 May 2017). "Laura Flessel nommée Ministre des Sports du gouvernement Édouard Philippe". Huffington Post.
  6. ^ Michel Chemin (24 July 1995). "L'épée française touche l'argent. Un Mondial de bonne augure à un an des Jeux olympiques d'Atlanta" (in French). Libération. Retrieved 5 June 2018.
  7. ^ "Laura Flessel : le monde après l'Olympe" (in French). Le Télégramme. 9 October 1998. Retrieved 5 June 2018.
  8. ^ Lionel Venturini (5 October 2006). "Laura Flessel sauve l'honneur" (in French). L'Humanité. Retrieved 5 June 2018.
  9. ^ "Le bronze pour Laura Flessel aux Championnats d'Europe d'escrime" (in French). Le Monde. 15 July 2009. Retrieved 5 June 2018.
  10. ^ "Laura Flessel-Colovic décroche son ticket pour Londres" (in French). Le Monde. 21 April 2012. Retrieved 5 June 2018.
  11. ^ "JO : Laura Flessel désignée porte-drapeau de la délégation française" (in French). Le Figaro. 14 March 2012. Retrieved 5 June 2018.
  12. ^ Aurelie Bas (30 July 2012). "JO 2012 : Laura Flessel peut prendre sa retraite, elle perd en 8e de finale" (in French). Melty (fr). Retrieved 5 June 2018.
  13. ^ "Laura Flessel, suspendue et révoltée – Libération". Liberation.fr. Retrieved 14 August 2012.
  14. ^ Etic Michel (7 August 2016). "Rio 2016 : la double vie de Laura Flessel" (in French). Melty (fr). Retrieved 5 June 2018.
  15. ^ Etic Michel (21 October 2012). "Danse avec les stars 3 : Laura Flessel a été éliminée" (in French). Voici. Retrieved 5 June 2018.
  16. ^ Dimitri Ranchou (20 May 2016). "Canal+ puissance 8 pour Rio" (in French). Média Sportif. Retrieved 5 June 2018.
  17. ^ Marianne Behar (10 December 2005). "Laura Flessel se fend pour les petits clubs" (in French). L'Humanité. Retrieved 5 June 2018.
  18. ^ Marianne Behar (3 May 2017). "Présidentielle: Matuidi et des sportifs français appellent à voter Macron" (in French). BFM TV. Retrieved 5 June 2018.
  19. ^ "L'ex-championne d'escrime Laura Flessel ministre des Sports" (in French). Radio France Internationale. 17 May 2017. Retrieved 5 June 2018.
  20. ^ "Laura Flessel lance une campagne contre les discriminations" (in French). L'Équipe. 15 March 2018. Retrieved 5 June 2018.

External links

  • "Laura Flessel-Colovic", Time, 11 September 2000
  • "Laura Flessel-Colovic", n°30 on Time’s list of "100 Olympic Athletes To Watch" (2008)
Olympic Games
Preceded by
Tony Estanguet
Flagbearer for  France
London 2012
Succeeded by
Teddy Riner
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