Peter French Earned the Bronze in Basel, Switzerland
Jan. 28, 2008
USAF Academy, Colo. - Air Force Academy fencer, Peter French traveled to Basel, Switzerland, this past weekend to compete in the 2008 Junior World Cup. French, a sophomore from Austin, Texas, placed third in men's individual epee to earn a bronze medal. In the first round, French defeated his opponents from Germany, Great Britain, Switzerland, Poland and France, 5-0. In the bout against France's Alexandre Blaszyck, ranked No. 1 in the world and the 2007 World champion, French recorded a 5-3 victory.
In direct eliminations, French finished 4-1. French fenced Matthew Trager from Italy, the No. 2-ranked fencer in the world, winning the bout, 15-12. The Academy fencer's only loss in direct eliminations was against Italy's Luca Ferraris, who is ranked third in the world in a very close 13-15 match.
"Coach Salem and I had a very productive weekend at the Junior World Cup in Basel, Switzerland, where I placed third. Coach Salem and I agree this is a great result, but are committed to turning bronze into gold at future tournaments. I was very proud to represent the United States and the Air Force in a successful manner at the international level," said French.
French is not new to international competitions. Prior to attending the Academy, he traveled to Tauberbischofsheim, Germany, for the 2006 Junior Men's Epee World Cup, where he finished 15th. He also finished in ninth-place in Bratislava, Slovakia, in 2007.
In Switzerland, head coach Abdel Salem accompanied French. "Obviously, I am a very proud coach. It is wonderful to be associated with this young man. Wearing the same Air Force warm-ups, we felt very special, we were good ambassadors of both Air Force and the USA, it is a huge responsibility. Now we need to work harder and try to keep our fencers on top," said Salem.