- The medals from the Paris Olympic Games revealed to the public
- This year’s Games in the French capital will begin in less than six months
- Podium finalists will have a piece of the Eiffel Tower embedded in their medal.
Athletes who triumph at this year’s Olympics will be rewarded with a piece of the iconic Eiffel Tower after the Paris Games medals were revealed on Thursday.
The two-week global extravaganza will begin in less than six months; The opening ceremony will take place on July 26, before the final events conclude on August 11.
And competitors now know exactly what they will win if they finish on the podium.
A hexagonal piece of iron taken from the Eiffel Tower has been embedded in each gold, silver and bronze medal, and Thierry Reboul, creative director of Paris 2024, has explained the thinking behind the design.
“The absolute symbol of Paris and France is the Eiffel Tower,” Reboul told reporters.
Athletes who finish on the podium at this year’s Olympics will receive a piece of the Eiffel Tower after the medals were revealed on Thursday.
A piece of hexagonal iron taken from the Eiffel Tower will be embedded in each medal.
French athletes Arnaud Assoumani (left), Marie Patouillet (second left), Sara Balzer (second right) and Paris 2024 director Tony Estanguet (right) pose with Olympic medals.
Paris 2024 said the inclusion of a piece of the Eiffel Tower will allow athletes to bring part of the city with them
“It is the opportunity for athletes to take a piece of Paris with them.”
The 18 gram medals have been designed by jeweler Chaumet and are surrounded by grooves that evoke rays of light around the outside of the inner hexagonal structure.
The Greek goddess of victory, Nike, also appears on the reverse of the medals, in a nod to where the Games began in Athens in 1896.
It is seen moving forward, with the Acropolis on one side and the Eiffel Tower on the other.
Meanwhile, the Paralympic Games medals have also been revealed to the public.
The Paralympic Games follow the Olympic Games and will take place over 12 days, from August 28 to September 8.
The medals contain a view of the Eiffel Tower from below and are stamped Paris 2024 in braille in honor of the Frenchman who invented the writing system.
“We want to make sure those pieces of the Eiffel Tower stay at home,” added French wheelchair tennis player Pauline Deroulede.
Another local favorite, wrestler Koumba Larroque, admitted he is now desperate for a medal after seeing them up close and personal.
“Seeing them so close gives me extra motivation,” he said.
Security has been one of the main concerns in preparing for the Games.
The largest security operation will occur around the opening ceremony on July 26, which for the first time will not be held inside a stadium.
The show takes place along the Seine River, where a flotilla of boats will transport the athletes and around 400,000 spectators will be able to watch from the banks for free, with another 100,000 paying for tickets.
More than 35,000 police officers will be deployed in Paris that night, while a new anti-drone laser system will also be installed due to the risk of drones carrying bombs.
“I can tell you that public authorities and ourselves are committed every day,” said Paris 2024 executive director Etienne Thobois.
“No stone is left unturned, there is not a single building that has not been examined.”