In line with its goal of showcasing sports and athletes in the capital’s most beautiful settings, Paris 2024 has revealed the courses for the Olympic Games triathlon and the Paralympic Games Para triathlon. They will start and finish at the Pont Alexandre III. These demanding courses are characterised by their technical challenges, ensuring an amazing experience for the athletes, the crowd and television viewers alike.
Developed in collaboration with World Triathlon and the relevant public authorities, these three distinct courses are particularly demanding for athletes and will highlight some of the most beautiful monuments in Paris. The starting point will be a floating pontoon positioned at the base of Pont Alexandre III bridge (on which a 1,000-seats spectator stand will be built), giving spectators the chance to see the start and finish of the triathlon and Para triathlon events, as well as the transition zone (between disciplines), ensuring a truly thrilling show.
An iconic venue of Paris 2024, Pont Alexandre III links Les Invalides and Le Grand Palais and will be a hub for the magic and excitement of the Games. The bridge is located right next to other competition venues such as Place de la Concorde and the Esplanade des Invalides and is close to the Champ-de-Mars Arena and the Eiffel Tower Stadium. It will also serve as host to the Marathon Swimming events and the finish of the Olympic Road cycling events (men’s and women’s time trials).
During the triathlon and Para triathlon events, some of the most beautiful monuments and symbolic landmarks in Paris will be put in the spotlight. After their swim in the Seine, the athletes will take in Le Grand Palais, Le Petit Palais, l’Assemblée nationale, Le Musée d’Orsay, Avenue des Champs-Elysées (with the Arc de Triomphe in their sights), Avenue Montaigne, Quai d’Orsay and Quai Anatole France as well as Boulevard Saint-Germain on the biking and running phases.
As with all the road events at Paris 2024, these will be a chance for spectators to support and cheer the athletes along the course and to celebrate the Games in a festive, sociable atmosphere in the heart of Paris with access along the routes free of charge.
Scenic urban routes to showcase the athletes and their performances
Paris 2024 has chosen to create demanding, technical courses on a sporting level, while ensuring the athletes’ safety. Scenic and urban, lively and energetic, these courses will provide the ideal setting for a thrilling and dramatic competition. They have also been designed to have the least impact possible in terms of their suitability (street furniture, resurfacing, etc.) and to meet World Triathlon’s specifications, particularly in terms of the width of the lanes, incline and distance, avoiding unnecessary turns and corners for handcycles and wheelchairs, and the kind of road surface (particularly regarding cobbles).
These three courses will be tested during the test events organised by Paris 2024 from 17th to 20th of August 2023, in international triathlon and Para-triathlon competitions. The test events will include installing and dismantling the floating starting pontoon and other complex structures, testing the biking and running courses for the triathlon and Para triathlon events and the management of traffic and influxes in and around the venues.
Details of the Olympic triathlon courses
The individual triathlon events of the Olympic Games will take place on 30th and 31st of July 2024, starting at 8am.
On 30th and 31st of July 2024, the 55 male and 55 female triathletes who have qualified for the Olympic Games will compete to determine the successors to Kristian BLUMMENFELT (NOR) and Flora DUFFY (BER).
The start will take place from a floating pontoon at the base of Pont Alexander III. After a 1.5km swim in the Seine the triathletes will arrive in the transition zone (swim to bike) on Pont Alexandre III after climbing 32 steps, a first in the history of the Olympic Games.
They will then mount their bikes for a 40km bike race (seven loops of 5.715km). They will head along Avenue Winston Churchill, passing in front of Le Grand Palais and Le Petit Palais before reaching two of the most beautiful avenues in the world, the Champs-Elysées and Avenue Montaigne, crossing the Seine over Pont des Invalides and onto Quai d’Orsay. Onwards onto Boulevard Saint-Germain before returning to the banks of the Seine via Rue du Bac and Quai Anatole France and Quai d’Orsay.
At the end of the seven bike laps, the triathletes will reach the transition zone (again on Pont Alexandre III) for the third and last phase of the event, the run. On the programme, 10km (4 laps of 2.5km) through the heart of Paris with the finish line on Pont Alexandre III in front of 1,000 spectators, for what is sure to be one of the highlights of the Olympic fortnight.
One week later, the Olympic Games triathlon mixed relay event will take place at 8am. On 5th August 2024, around 18 teams of four triathletes (two women and two men per nation) will compete in the mixed relay event to try and emulate Great Britain, the champions at Tokyo 2020.
This time, as approved by World Triathlon for all the events in this Olympic cycle, the female athletes will be closing the race with a relay order as follows: male athlete; female athlete; male athlete; female athlete.
Each athlete will complete a 300m swimming loop in the Seine between Pont Alexandre III and Pont des Invalides, 5.8km of biking (two laps of 2.9km) via Pont Alexandre III, the Champs-Elysées and Avenue Montaigne, Rue François 1er, Place du Canada, Pont des Invalides and Quai d’Orsay. To finish, the athletes will complete their race with a 1.8km run (two 900m laps) between Pont Alexandre III and Pont des Invalides, with some of the most beautiful monuments in Paris as a backdrop.
Para triathlon course
The Paralympic Games events will benefit from the same incredible setting on 1st and 2nd of September 2024! Since this project began, Paris 2024 has demonstrated the same level of ambition for both the Olympic and the Paralympic Games, with the same iconic competition venues for both Games.
This will also be the case for the Para triathlon events, which will (with a few exceptions) use the same course, providing Para triathletes with a fitting setting at the heart of Paris for their exciting performances. For the third edition of the Para Triathlon at the Paralympic Games, Paris 2024 will provide courses with undulating terrain that is sure to build the crowd’s suspense right up to the finish line. Technical and demanding courses that could give Alexis Hanquinquant (FRA) a chance to win his second consecutive Paralympic title.
The 120 Para triathletes competing in the six categories will set off on 1st and 2nd of September 2024, battling it out for the 11 Paralympic titles at stake.
Athletes in the PTS2 to PTS5 categories (physical or neurological disability using regular or time trial bikes) will be the first to compete on 1st of September, followed by athletes in the PTWC (lower limb disability or spinal cord injury requiring the use of a handcycle for the biking part and a sports wheelchair) and PTVI (visual disability) categories on 2nd of September.
They will set off from the floating pontoon at the base of Pont Alexandre III for a 750m swimming loop to Pont des Invalides before returning to the Ports des Invalides and the first transition zone (swim/bike). Then the athletes will take on a first distance of 1,500m bike course, accessing Quai d’Orsay via a ramp just upstream from Pont de l’Alma before returning to Pont Alexandre III and doing five loops of 3.7km to complete the 20km bike course. This loop will go along Avenue Winston Churchill, passing in front of Le Grand Palais and Le Petit Palais, Avenue des Champs-Elysées, Avenue Montaigne and Rue François 1er before crossing the over the Seine at the Pont des Invalides. They will then reach the second transition zone (bike/run) on Pont Alexandre III, and head back to Port du Gros Caillou before returning via Quai d’Orsay.
As the setting for what promises to be a breath-taking climax, the course will take Le Cours de la Reine, Pont de la Concorde and Quai d’Orsay, before making two loops and a 180 degree turn on the Boulevard Saint-Germain for a dramatic finish on Pont Alexandre III, completing a 5km race. We already cannot wait!
Tony Estanguet, President of Paris 2024: “At Paris 2024, we wanted to put the spotlight on triathlon, due to its popularity as both an Olympic sport since its first appearance at the Games in 2000 and in wider society, where it is gaining more and more fans. Particular care has been taken to create the triathlon and Para triathlon courses, which will be equally spectacular, in the heart of the city and next to some of the most beautiful Parisian monuments. With the swimming event in the Seine, the Paris 2024 edition of the triathlon and Para triathlon will ultimately contribute to leaving a legacy for the region and the people of Paris, with the swimmability of the Seine and the Marne representing a major goal ever since the bidding phase. Once again, we’re going to be in for a treat, and we can’t wait to see the athletes in this magnificent playground!
Marisol Casado, President of World Triathlon: “The course of the triathlon and Para triathlon events in Paris is just everything that we have been dreaming of for years for the family of triathlon. The heartbeat of the city will echo in the rhythm of the race, as athletes will swim, bike and run right in the heart of the City of Lights. I can only imagine how wonderful it will be to see the best triathletes and para triathletes of the world sprint through the bustling streets, weaving past such historic landmarks and cheered on by a roaring crowd. To crown the Olympic and Paralympic champions in one of the most beautiful landscapes of the world will be just amazing. I am sure that the triathlon and Para triathlon races in Paris 2024 will leave an indelible mark on both the athletes and the city itself”
Amélie Oudéa-Castéra, Minister for Sport and the Olympic and Paralympic Games: “Triathlon has pulled out all the stops! For five days, the triathlon and Para-triathlon events will take place in one of the most beautiful and prestigious stages in the world next year. Around the Seine and its banks, from Avenue des Champs-Elysées to Le Grand and Petit Palais, from Les Invalides and Pont Alexandre III to Le Musée d’Orsay, the world’s best triathletes and Para-triathletes will enthral the countless spectators on hand to encourage them, as well as the millions of television viewers, for what will undoubtedly be one of the most unforgettable memories from the Games.”
Pierre Rabadan, Deputy Mayor of Paris in charge of sport, the Olympic and Paralympic Games and the Seine, said: “The Triathlon and Para Triathlon competitions could not have asked for a better stage during the Paris 2024 Games: the heart of Paris, and in particular the Seine, which will host the swimming events. The routes of these Olympic and Paralympic events will cross the most prestigious and iconic boulevards, districts and riverbanks of the French capital, which are part of the unique heritage of Parisians. Athletes, spectators and viewers will experience a historic and festive moment of sport during these events! Thanks to intensive collective work to reclaim the river, driven by the Mayor of Paris, these exceptional routes are now a concrete and essential reality. The Seine will be at the heart of the Paris 2024 project, for these Games of a new era which, in the long term, will allow the opening of bathing sites to the general public from the summer of 2025.”
Léonie Périault, three-time world champion and bronze medallist at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games in the mixed relay: “It’s going to be a special moment of the Olympic Games. Having the chance to perform at home, in a postcard setting, is really exciting! We can’t wait to get there. We will rely heavily on the French public and supporters to create a crazy atmosphere all along the course and to help us go for medals. The course will be technical, and challenging, with its own specificities and we can’t wait to discover during the test event this summer.”
Alexis Hanquinquant, five-time world champion and Paralympic champion at the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games: “Being able to defend my Paralympic title at home, in France, is going to be magical and it’s an opportunity that should be seized! The Paralympic Games are a moment that we all look forward to as athletes, but even more so when we have the chance to compete at home, in front of our public, at the very first Paralympic Summer Games organised in France. The course promises to be very spectacular – even if as an athlete we will be more focused on competition than on the beauty of the sites! – urban and will make for some great images with incredible sites and monuments.”
Léo Bergère, European and World champion in men’s elite race and mixed relay in 2022: “We are already looking ahead! The revealing of the routes is always an important moment in the preparation of a competition, it is the moment when it becomes more concrete when we feel that it is getting closer. We visualise the route, the transitions, the key moments, and the strategic places, which could allow us to make a difference on the course. The Olympic Games on home soil is a once-in-a-lifetime event for an athlete. We look forward to it. And even more to have the chance to have our competitions in this dream setting”