Olympic flame arrives in Marseille ahead of Paris Games

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The Olympic flame for Paris 2024 has arrived in Marseille with thousands of spectators lining the city’s Old Port to welcome the flame to France.

After departing the Greek city of Piraeus on 27 April, the Olympic flame arrived aboard the famous three-masted Belem on Wednesday, May 8 to signal the start of a day of celebrations and the prologue to the Olympic Torch Relay.

Olympic champion Florent Manaudou was given the honour of being the first Torchbearer on French soil with local rapper Jul lighting the Olympic Torch Relay cauldron to huge applause.

“Now the Games are really on,” Pierre-Olivier Beckers-Vieujant, IOC member and President of the Coordination Commission for Paris 2024 told Olympics.com. “This flame represents the Games returning to France after 100 years. Now every day counts.

“After years of planning, everything has become real today. With 150,000 people here, it makes people dream and is a symbol of the success of these Games, even before they have begun.”

The relay will start on Thursday with former Olympique de Marseille soccer players Jean-Pierre Papin, Didier Drogba and Basile Boli, as well as three-star chef Alexandre Mazzia among the torch bearers.

More than 10,000 people will take part in the torch relay before the flame reaches Paris and is installed near the Louvre, in the Jardin des Tuileries.

The Olympic Opening Ceremony will take place on the River Seine on July 26.

Source: Olympics.com.

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