Laure Manaudou, the first French torchbearer in Olympia. PARIS 2024

The first French torchbearer on Greek soil has been announced. Paris 2024 has chosen Laure Manaudou, a three-time Olympic swimming medallist and captain of the Olympic torch relay.

Laure Manaudou will receive the lighted Paris 2024 Olympic Torch from the hands of the very first torchbearer, Stefanos Douskos, who is an Olympic rowing champion who won gold for Greece at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games. Insidethegames has already reported that the iconic French swimmer was the frontrunner and now it has been officially confirmed. 

The choice of Laure Manaudou as the first torchbearer was an obvious one for Paris 2024. As well as being an athlete close to the hearts of the French people, Manaudou is one of the four captains of the Torch Relay, alongside her brother Florent Manaudou, as well as Mona Francis, and Dimitri Pavadé. 

Manaudou burst onto the world stage at the age of 17, winning three medals, including Olympic gold (400m freestyle) for Greece at the 2004 Athens Olympic Games. 

Laure Manaudou won the 200m backstroke final at the 2008 European Championships. GETTY IMAGES
Laure Manaudou won the 200m backstroke final at the 2008 European Championships. GETTY IMAGES

20 years on, Laure Manaudou continues to illustrate the links between France, Greece and the Games. Many will remember the images of her finals and the emotions they aroused. A young French athlete at the time, she went on to cement her place among the legends of French sport. 

With 101 days to go until Paris 2024, the Olympic Flame will be lit on Tuesday morning in the traditional ceremony organised by the Hellenic Olympic Committee in Olympia, Greece. 

The flame will be brought to life in the purest ancient tradition, using a parabolic dish (known to the ancient Greeks as a Skaphia) to concentrate the sun's rays and ignite the torch in front of the Temple of Hera, on the archaeological site of Olympia.