Floriane Hot: “I had thought about being world champion in my wildest dreams, but certainly not with such a time. »

Floriane Hot, 100 km world champion – Photo credit: Sami Vaskola

Lepape-info: Floriane, did you expect to do such a race?

Floriane Hot: It went much better than expected, my plan was to start on the basis of Laurence Klein’s French record (7h26’44) hoping that it holds. I hadn’t imagined being world champion and even less so with this time (7h04’03 – European record).

Lepape-info: How did you experience this 100 km world championship?

F H : Much less well in the end than in Belvès (Dordogne) during the French championship in April. I didn’t have very good feelings from the start, I suffered more than expected and sooner than I thought. From the 30th kilometer I had heavy legs, I told myself that it was going to be long, I looked at my watch which indicated 2 hours of racing, I realized that there were around 5h-5h30 left, it was complicated. At Belvès, I never thought to myself that I had 5 or 4 hours of racing left at some point. It was tough psychologically, I started 12-13th, I overtook my opponents, it helped me morally to see that I was able to come back on some girls despite my leg pain. Finally I kept a faster pace than I imagined, I found myself in the lead two laps from the end (about 15 km from the finish) with Camille Chaigneau not far behind, I tried to hold on until at the end, I had all my relatives along the route, my parents, my companion Nicolas (Navarro), my brother, my sister, my cousins, my girlfriends, they pushed me and helped me to hold on to the end.

Floriane Hot: “Before the start I thought that already beating the French record would be great, it was only in the last kilometer that my brother told me that I was at least two minutes below the record for Europe. »

Lepape-info: New French and European record at an average of 14 km / h is phenomenal

F H : It seems crazy to me if someone had told me some time ago that I would be able to do this, I would never have believed it. During my preparation, my long outings always went well, I chained a lot of kilometers but as we say from 60 km it’s really the unknown, from this moment of the race we don’t don’t know how the body will react. I was lucky it held up.

Lepape-info: You have smashed your record which was 7h42 established in Belvès! You achieve the European record during the second 100 km of your career!

F H : Yes in addition this chrono I had not even looked at it. Before the start I told myself that already beating the French record would be great, it was only in the last kilometer that my brother told me that I was at least two minutes below the European record. I didn’t even know I drew on my last strength to give it my all. I left at my pace of 4’25-4’20 per kilometer, I quickly found myself alone before seeing an American and an Irishwoman, I forced myself to try to catch up with them and no longer run alone. Suddenly it made me accelerate and I wondered if I could hold on. Once stuck on this faster pace than expected I no longer slowed down and I held on until the end (smashed French record of 22’41 and improved European record of 6’29).

Lepape-info: The old French record was held by Laurence Klein who was present as a member of the management of the French 100 km team

F H : She was very moved at the finish but also at the start she told us that she would have liked to be with us in the race, in her role at the side of the road she was very present with us. It was a beautiful moment of emotion for everyone.

Lepape-info: Your next goal is to beat the world record?

F H : No, not for the moment (laughs), I’m going to rest. I underwent my preparation, it was very complicated, I went to the end of myself. Normally summer is a time when I cut and there I chained the 100 km of Belvès and Berlin since April. Let’s say that for a month and a half, I didn’t do any specific training but I quickly resumed to prepare for Berlin whereas at the start I had only planned Belvès. In addition this summer it was very hot I had trouble keeping up, I want to rest, I won’t be doing a marathon by the end of the year, I just want to recover, cut for myself regenerate. I need it physically and mentally.

Lepape-info: In your preparation you went up to what mileage per week?

F H : I chained 3-4 weeks to more than 200 kilometers (week at 150 km plus the long outing up to 55 km at the end of the week) all this in the heat, so my trainer told me not to to force because the recovery was more difficult, I did not make a long outing at 60 km as before Belvès.

Lepape-info: Camille Chaigneau finishes 2nd at 2’29 behind you with a double for the French team

F H : Yes, that means we both did better than the old European record. In the bus, after the race, we said to ourselves that it was crazy that the French record had held since 2007 and the European record since 2004 and that these times were beaten by both of us at once. The 100 km has been experiencing a new impetus for a few years, the athletes are younger, the new shoes with carbon soles allow us to chain the kilometers more easily in preparation and to recover better, that inevitably helps on this kind of race.

Lepape-info: The 100 km course was rolling like that of the famous Berlin marathon?

F H : Yes totally, it was a change from Belvès where there was a lot of elevation with a superb setting. Here in Berlin, it was very hard morally with the repeated loops that we chained, the advantage is that I often saw my family and my relatives on the other hand with the round trips and the turns at 180°C it was difficult, I struggled. The straight lines I tried to cut them into several sections for it to go better.

Floriane Hot: “If I’m here it’s largely thanks to Nicolas, he advises me, he reassures me. I’m lucky that he has a lot more experience than me, he knows what mistakes not to make or not to repeat. Besides, it was he who told me to start the 100 km. »

Lepape-info: Your trainer Jérémy Cabadet is the same as that of your companion, Nicolas Navarro (recent 5th in the European marathon championship), a trio that works wonderfully

F H : Yes indeed we get along very well with our coach who is a friend before being a coach. It’s natural to train with him, everything is done in a very good atmosphere. That’s also what makes it work. He prepares our plans for us but he leaves us a lot of flexibility, for example if I am tired or if I have to adapt with my work. He puts no pressure on us.

Lepape-info: The presence, the support of Nicolas Navarro is essential

F H : This is what makes my strength, our daily strength. I owe him a lot if I’m there it’s largely thanks to Nicolas, he advises me, he reassures me. I’m lucky that he has a lot more experience than me, he knows what mistakes not to make or not to repeat. Besides, it was he who told me to start the 100 km. This happened last January, he was leaving for a 5-week internship in Kenya. Before he left we were at the airport and I was not feeling too well because I had to stay in France for my job, he was afraid that I would be bored, I didn’t really know what goal to set for myself, I was thinking of the marathon from Rotterdam but hey… and it was he who told me about the 100 km, he knows that I like to run for a long time, on a more relaxed pace than that of the marathon. He told me about the 100 km World Championships, explaining to me that there were the French championships in April and that this could be a new challenge. I thought it could combine everything I love, I love challenges, he told me once and it was gone.

Lepape-info: Nicolas, 5th in the European marathon championship in Munich two weeks ago, also failed a place on the podium for him…

F H : What a pity this fall which cost him dearly. I trust him, he was unlucky in this race but there are other even better ones that will come later. I know he can. There was disappointment but also pride because not many would have left as he did after this racing incident. Here he was super happy for me, it’s great to share this together, we are lucky to share the same passion, to always be there for each other and that’s what makes us strong.

Floriane Hot: “I was discussing it with Stéphanie Gicquel (the 3rd Frenchwoman in the race) and she reminded me that at the start of the year I didn’t even know there were the 100 km world championships in Berlin this summer. »

Lepape-info: You were talking about your job, you are an air traffic controller at Aix Les Milles aerodrome

F H : I’m lucky to work staggered hours, to have colleagues and a boss who support me a lot. I manage to squeeze in my workouts, I was able to take 2 weeks off for the big weeks of training this summer. I had already taken 3 weeks for a preparation in Kenya before Belvès. I love my job, it’s my balance, I need to keep this activity. Of course not working would be better for my recovery but I consider myself lucky. For other athletes it’s much more complicated to manage training and side work.

Lepape-info: You have achieved a real tour de force

F H : I was discussing it with Stéphanie Gicquel (the 3rd Frenchwoman in the race) and she reminded me that at the beginning of the year I didn’t even know that there were the 100 km world championships in Berlin this summer . It hadn’t been my goal for years, like others, and suddenly I may have put less pressure on myself, although… at first I started thinking it’s make or break. For Belvès I had nothing to lose, I was doing my race in my corner, there here with the France team jersey on my shoulders I was less clever, I didn’t want to make a poor performance for my first international selection.

Lepape-info: As a bonus you win the silver team medal

F H : Yes we are delighted, it was really the objective to go for a team podium, in addition we get along very well all three (with Camille Chaigneau and Stéphanie Gicquel), we are very happy to be able to share this together .

Lepape-info: In the end, how do you feel after this superb world title?

F H : I feel like I’m on another planet, I can’t realize that I broke the European record, we had never considered it. I had thought about being world champion in my wildest dreams, but certainly not with such a time. I am very happy to have been able to offer this to my family, my friends, my cousins ​​who were there at the edge of the course because everyone made the trip. During the race I thought about them a lot, I wanted to give them this medal so much that I gave it my all.

We should also point out the very good performance among the men of Guillaume Ruel. The 2021 French 100 km champion finished 5th in the world championships in 6h19’51” improving by 3’24 Pascal Fétizon’s French record in 6h23’15” established in the year 2000.

Floriane Hot: “I had thought about being world champion in my wildest dreams, but certainly not with such a time. »