— Published 7 March 2023

A worldwide relay at D – 500 days

The symbolic date of D – 500 days before the opening of the Olympic Games of Paris 2024, Tuesday, March 14, looks very international for the organizing committee. It announces a joint operation with the Ministry of Europe and Foreign Affairs, the diplomatic network and the overseas territories labeled “Terre de Jeux 2024“: a sports relay of 24 hours that will cross the five continents, all time zones of the planet. It will involve the general public and the sports movement, with the mobilization of French embassies abroad and the departments, regions and communities of Overseas (DROM-COM). The first edition of this relay on a global scale, last year, had gathered more than 44 diplomatic posts and overseas territories and more than 8,000 participants. The second edition should push the walls even further, with 116 overseas countries and territories and 128 embassies or consulates involved. The relay will start in New Zealand, then cross Oceania, Asia, Europe, Africa and America, before ending in the Pacific, in French Polynesia. Throughout the day, each will hold a one-hour sporting event, starting at 9:00 am local time. Once the event is over, it will be handed over to the embassies and DROM-COMs in the next time zone. And so on for 24 hours. More than a hundred athletes will take part in the relay, including Ellen Keane, Paralympic gold medal swimmer at the Tokyo 2020 Games, and Kelly Harrington, Olympic boxing champion at the Tokyo 2020 Games, expected in Ireland ; Oussama Mellouli, the most successful Tunisian swimmer and athlete in the history of the Olympic Games with two gold medals and a bronze medal, invited to take to the water in Tunisia; or the French volleyball player Jean Patry, Olympic gold medalist in Tokyo 2020, relay in Italy. In Paris, a group of about forty persons will run along the Seine, in echo to the ceremony of opening of the Games, from the ministry of the Sports, in the XIIIth district, until the Quai d’Orsay.