Boris Neveu finished seventh in the single-seater kayak (K1) event of the Tokyo Olympics, won by Czech Jiri Prskavec on Friday.
Nephew, the last chance for a French medal in the discipline, finished 9 seconds 55 / 100th behind the Czech, crowned Olympic champion ahead of the Slovakian Jakub Grigar, 2nd, and the German Hannes Aigner, 3rd.
"It's a big disappointment. I was not there to finish 7th, I was there to win a medal," said the 35-year-old Frenchman after the final, who was taking part in his first Olympics and had warned that 'he was in Tokyo to "be Olympic champion".
"I had the means to go and get this medal, I got stronger as the competition went on. I was confident, sure of my strength, but I made a small mistake and I couldn't manage to to go beyond and I remain stuck on it ", regretted the Bagnérais.
Despite everything, "I am happy to have committed myself fully to this final", but "I am disappointed because I was in good shape," he added.
Boris Neveu said he did not yet know if he wanted to participate in the Paris Games in 2024.
"Hot it's complicated (to know, Editor's note) ... making an Olympic final that motivates me, it's Paris, it's only in three years but if I continue it's to be Olympic champion, so you have to have the mental, physical, human, financial means to be able to continue. "
In the immediate term, he said he wanted to focus on the next events, in particular the World Championships in Bratislava (Slovakia) at the end of September.
"I'll make a point after."
In eight Olympic editions, the Blues have won 18 podiums including seven gold medals, three for the only Tony Estanguet (2000, 2004 and 2012).
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