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Four-time European medallist Thierry Rey followed up on his 1979 World Championships gold by winning gold for France at 1980 Moscow Olympic Games.

In 1983, he memorably became European champion at the Pierre de Coubertin stadium in Paris before retiring a year later. In 2007, Rey became president of the judo section for Lagardère Paris Racing, being responsible for the Paris region for several years and in 2008 became the director of elite sports development for Lagardère Paris Racing and Team Lagardère.

A prominent columnist and TV personality, Rey remains an influential member of the judo family in his homeland.