This Sautronnais (originally from Sautron near Nantes), 23, who has dwarfism, aims to participate in the Paralympic Games in Paris 2024.
The one who is currently at the Pôle Espoirs, however, started badminton only four years ago.
He “accepted” his handicap and made it “a strength” today thanks to sport. Charles Noakes challenged himself to participate in the Paralympic Games in Paris in 2024 in parabadminton. This Sautronnais (originally from Sautron near Nantes), aged 23, is suffering from dwarfism, but from the height of his 1.45 m, he sees big. His harvest of titles in recent months has heightened his Olympic ambition. Double champion of France in parabadminton since January 2020 (in singles and doubles) and bronze medalist at an Open in Dubai a few weeks ago, Charles feels that he is "taking a step forward" in his project. . As he started qualifying too late, he will nevertheless not be able to claim the Tokyo Paralympic Games, where parabadminton will make his first appearance.
Born in London to an English father and a French mother (originally from La Chapelle-sur-Erdre), Charles, who will line up for the Cartagena Open in Spain from next week, has started badminton only four years ago. After having touched football, tennis and swimming, he opted for this discipline. “I had a good level at the colleague and in high school. "
He enrolled at the Saint-Herblain club in September 2017. While he was training with able-bodied people, his trainer very quickly suggested that he calibrate himself with people in wheelchairs.
He absolutely does not take offense.
Quite the contrary.
“It was a little weird at the start, admits the one who from a very young age only practiced sport with able-bodied people.
But, as I thought about it, I said to myself that I had a card to play, a chance to seize.
Today, I do not regret my choice.
"With these new sparring-partners, Charles progresses a lot" technically "and" works on precision and patience ".
“I made a wealth of my handicap.
After obtaining a license in sports management in Nantes, Charles joined the Pôle Espoirs in July 2019 (pending the planned opening in September of the future Creps in La Chapelle-sur-Erdre). Twenty-five to thirty hours of badminton per week, two sessions minimum per day, bodybuilding, physical and mental preparation… Charles Noakes devotes most of his life to racket and shuttlecock, and prepares himself like a top athlete. At the same time, as part of civic service, he is in charge of the communication sector at the Badminton League. At the Pôle, he improves his skills with young people aged 13 to 17 (able-bodied) who are among the very best French. “I slapped myself at the start, but I worked a lot, I never gave up, breaths the Sautronnais. And what's funny,it is that they are the ones who give me advice when they are much younger than me. "
Japan, South America, Denmark… Charles scrapes along with other short people all over the world.
"A lot of people would like to be in my place I think," says the man who is currently third in the world in singles and 18th in doubles.
I travel a lot.
I am applying today to participate in the Paralympic Games in Paris in 2024. I have made my handicap a wealth.
I want to prove that despite my small size, I can do big things.
JO-2024: With silver sports photography, Analog Sport promotes social inclusion and dreams of the Games
Olympic Games 2024: Justice suspends in summary proceedings the work of the media village in Seine-Saint-Denis