Paris 2024 Paralympic Opening Ceremony set for Place de la Concorde

Paris 2024 Paralympic Opening Ceremony
Paris 2024
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The 2024 Paris Paralympic Opening Ceremony will take place at the Place de la Concorde with an athlete parade along part of the Champs-Élysées, marking the first Paralympic Opening Ceremony to ever occur outside of a stadium.

The Paralympics, which open Aug. 28, 2024, start two and a half weeks after the Paris Olympics end. The Olympic Opening Ceremony in Paris will also be the first held outside of a stadium, happening along the Seine River and climaxing at the Eiffel Tower.

Paralympic organizers said 65,000 people will be able to attend the Opening Ceremony: 30,000 along the Champs-Élysées parade route and 35,000 in the Place de la Concorde area.

The Place de la Concorde, a public square on the east end of the Champs-Élysées, is famous for holding public executions during the French Revolution, including of King Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette.

In sports, it is seen annually during the last stage of the Tour de France, which ends with laps on the Champs-Élysées.

The Olympics and Paralympics will hold competition at other famous venues in and around Paris. For the Paralympics, with 12 days of competition, this includes:

• The Grand Palais for wheelchair fencing and taekwondo
• The Champ de Mars Arena for judo and wheelchair rugby
• The Esplanade des Invalides for archery
• A stadium at the Eiffel Tower for blind football
• The Château de Versailles for equestrian
• Roland Garros for wheelchair tennis

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Paris 2024 Paralympic Opening Ceremony

Paris 2024 Paralympic Opening Ceremony

Paris 2024 Paralympic Opening Ceremony

Illustrations via Paris 2024.

Mikaela Shiffrin heads to world championships with medal records in sight

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Before Mikaela Shiffrin can hold the World Cup wins record, she can become the most decorated Alpine skier in modern world championships history.

Shiffrin takes a respite from World Cup pursuits for the biennial world championships in France. She is expected to race at least four times, beginning with Monday’s combined.

Shiffrin has a tour-leading 11 World Cup victories in 23 starts this season, her best since her record 17-win 2018-19 campaign, but world championships do not count toward the World Cup.

Shiffrin remains one career victory behind Swede Ingemar Stenmark‘s record 86 World Cup wins until at least her next World Cup start in March.

Shiffrin has been more successful at worlds than at the Olympics and even on the World Cup. She has 11 medals in 13 world championships races dating to her 2013 debut, including making the podium in each of her last 10 events.

ALPINE SKIING WORLDS: Broadcast Schedule

She enters worlds one shy of the modern, post-World War II individual records for total medals (Norway’s Kjetil Andre Aamodt won 12) and gold medals (Austrian Toni Sailer, Frenchwoman Marielle Goitschel and Swede Anja Pärson won seven).

Worlds take place exactly one year after Shiffrin missed the medals in all of her Olympic races, but that’s not motivating her.

“If I learned anything last year, it’s that these big events, they can go amazing, and they can go terrible, and you’re going to survive no matter what,” she said after her most recent World Cup last Sunday. “So I kind of don’t care.”

Shiffrin ranks No. 1 in the world this season in the giant slalom (Feb. 16 at worlds) and slalom (Feb. 18).

This year’s combined is one run of super-G coupled with one run of slalom (rather than one downhill and one slalom), which also plays to her strengths. She won that event, with that format, at the last worlds in 2021. The combined isn’t contested on the World Cup, so it’s harder to project favorites.

Shiffrin is also a medal contender in the super-G (Feb. 8), despite starting just two of five World Cup super-Gs this season (winning one of them).

She is not planning to race the downhill (Feb. 11), which she often skips on the World Cup and has never contested at a worlds. Nor is she expected for the individual parallel (Feb. 15), a discipline she hasn’t raced in three years in part due to the strain it puts on her back with the format being several runs for the medalists.

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Lucas Braathen, world’s top male slalom skier, in doubt for world championships

Lucas Braathen
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Norway’s Lucas Braathen, the world’s top male slalom skier this season, is doubtful to compete in the world championships slalom on Feb. 19 after appendix surgery on Tuesday.

“It’s been a tough couple of days fighting after surprisingly finding out about quite an intense infection on my appendix,” Braathen, a 22-year-old soccer convert with a Brazilian mom, posted on social media. “I’ve been through surgery and I’m blessed that it went successfully.”

The Norway Alpine skiing team doctor said Braathen’s recovery will take a few weeks, but there is a small possibility he can make it back for the world championships slalom, which is on the final day of the two-week competition.

Braathen has two slalom wins and one giant slalom win this World Cup season. He will miss Saturday’s slalom in Chamonix, France, the last race before worlds. Countryman Henrik Kristoffersen and Swiss Daniel Yule can overtake him atop the World Cup slalom standings in Chamonix.

Braathen entered last year’s Olympics as the World Cup slalom leader and skied out in the first run at the Games.

ALPINE SKIING WORLDS: Broadcast Schedule

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