Loin des projecteurs de la télévision, Patrick Montel continue de commenter l’athlétisme

Loin des projecteurs de la télévision, Patrick Montel continue de commenter l'athlétisme

The former France Television star sports commentator is in Munich to cover the European Championships. With limited means and a sense of ingenuity.

It continues to be THE voice of athletics, the one that accompanied the feats of Marie-José Pérec in the 400 m at the Olympic Games, the world records of Usain Bolt or the fabulous goal of Christine Arron offering gold to France in the 2003 World Cup in Paris . A picture that accompanied the chills of millions of their French compatriots glued to the television to vibrate with the Gods of the stadium. After 33 years of comments, Patrick Montel had to close in November 2021 the chapter of televisions in France, expelled by the management of the audiovisual group after supporting the marathon runner Clémence Calvin on Facebook who had eluded anti-doping control. Le Parisien has also undoubtedly paid the price for the new “place for young people” policy decreed by the new management.

But it’s not quite time for retirement yet for the former economics professor, who still proclaims his love for the sport at 69. “I have passion in my heart and always feel like a junior.“, he assures. This week, the journalist is present in Munich to comment on the European Athletics Championships in his own way. With minimal means: an internet connection, Facebook and his smartphone are his only working tools. “Munich is next door, so I came after getting my accreditation, like everyone else. Thanks to Radio Montel, the organizers took me seriously when I applied.“, he says from Bavaria.

With Radio Montel, it’s inventive

Radio Montel is a communication medium, created through Facebook, with the help of a collaborator during the episode of the health crisis”,a way of talking about those we never give the mics to, like trailers“, specifies. “We still manage to unite nearly 200,000 people who do me the honor of sharing their passion for sports through this channel.“, adds who was distinguished with Three Gold Microphones, rewarding his covers of sporting events, not without a touch of pride. In 2021 he had already brought the Tokyo Olympics to life from France, achieving great success among Internet users who savored both his verbal flights and his calmer analysis.

I don’t want my accreditation to be broken.

Patrick Montel

In Germany, Patrick Montel discovered the world of life, eschewing the means of public television that he enjoyed for several decades. Not being a rights holder, he was banned from commenting at the stadium. He had to adapt so as not to receive slaps on the knuckles, broadcasting his recorded comments live the morning after the events. A deferred direct, in a way. “I don’t want my accreditation to be broken, so I treat myself to finding a way to express myself in a new space.“, he admits.

Directly in the subway to comment on the European Championship

This week we saw him comment live on certain events in the middle of the street, near the central station of Munich, in front of passers-by who were visibly stunned to witness the fiery gestures of this foreigner in front of his smartphone. True to himself. On another occasion he analyzed, again live, the abandonment of Kevin Mayer … from a subway train. “I think people are a bit taken aback because I’m so angry on the subway.“, released, amused, in this sequence. The image moves a little, the framing is rough, it even loses its balance at one point, but the magic of the direct works: “The street and the subway were a delirium. I am not prohibited from anything because I no longer represent the public service. I am completely free. The only thing I forbid myself is to criticize anyone. Of which I do not like, I do not speak. To those I love, I say.»

He has just had the opportunity to witness his attachment to some of his former collaborators by passing on the set of france televisions, earlier in the week, at the olympic stadium. All at discretion. “I have no bitterness. I am happy to see Alexandre Pasteur succeed me, in a different style. I have a lot of respect for my old house and obviously I don’t intend to compete with it. They greeted me, I greeted them, it was a very special moment“, Acknowledges the ex of the house, undoubtedly relieved. The wound from his departure seems to have healed. “This day, I made my duel for France Télévisions, it was not easy. Without wanting to do psychoanalysis, for a year, it was even hard“, recognize.

After this stop at his old house, Patrick Montel went out for a walk around the stadium and its surroundings. This is the new way to fish for information from him. The mixed zone, a place where athletes parade before the media after their events, very little for him. “I don’t have the place of Nelson Monfort who is at number 2. I am 50me in the order of appearance (laughs) and then I realized that that was not where we collected the strongest things. The athletes have already answered fifteen interviews before me, they are tired and want to move on. So I go behind the scenes and leave it a bit to chance.“Slides the commentator. Finally, chance, not entirely since many athletes still recognize his reel or his voice. This necessarily facilitates impromptu meetings and interviews.

I have no accreditation, no proposal. I will put myself in the labor market and propose my candidacy for the Olympic Games.

Patrick Montel

On Sunday night, when the curtain falls on the European Championship, Patrick Montel will close the parenthesis after having enjoyed a bath of youth on the other side of the Rhine.”It is a return to the basics, exactly the same emotion as before me if I no longer have the same means. Yes, Radio Montel makes me as happy as in the days of television.“, he assures. We relaunched it with the prospect of the 2024 Olympic Games in Paris. A party in which he absolutely wants to participate: “I can’t get that out of my head. At the moment, I have no accreditation, no proposal. I will enter the job market and submit my application. I hope someone is interested. I can’t imagine not being there. There, I would have a hard time recovering. I tell myself that maybe one day a light will come on somewhere.»

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