Hubert Picquier, the elected official in charge of padel for the French Tennis Federation and Board member of the International Federation returns to this " world of padel bubbling " Files in progress, explanations, FFT PADEL TOUR 2020, relationship with FIP, all the themes are covered.

  • The FFT invests heavily in padel

The French Tennis Federation believes 100% in padel.

She demonstrates it every day. She works with many external contributors to support her. The FFT remains permanently attentive to its clubs to carry out and structure the development of the padel.

The proof with the important aids brought to the clubs to build pitches of padel. The mesh is being done, and we have fewer and fewer regions without padel, which shows that we are on a very good momentum.

What is also interesting concerning the financial investment in the padel, it is the cities which are more and more interested in it and which are ready today to carry and develop the padel.

  • Municipal clubs can be helped. What about private clubs?

I fully understand some clubs of padel private individuals who sometimes ask the FFT for financial assistance in the same way as the clubs of padel municipal.

But the FFT cannot subsidize private clubs.

On the other hand, we try to help them in other ways, via our very many demonstrations, for example with the FFT PADEL TOUR. This circuit is intended to help them thanks to the strike force of the Federation.

We have set up the P25: A category of tailor-made tournaments since it is a category without constraints and which clubs can take advantage of this year.

The FFT does not stop working for the promotion of padel and therefore for all clubs of padel.

  • Le padel : a fashionable sport

The world of padel move. We feel that it is bubbling: The padel is boiling. The padel is at the center of many discussions. We feel that there is a great expectation. It is an increasingly fashionable sport and we must take advantage of it. But you also have to sit down and organize it well. And the FFT brings a lot to this level with its expertise and its general investment.

Another element to take into consideration: The media. Today, a news padel in general media, it has become commonplace. A few years ago, the community padel was pleased to see information padel in a media. Today, it is almost normal.

  • 2e edition of the French Open of padel in Perpignan Place du Castillet from June 11 to 14… And the stage of FFT Padel Tour of Pau from June 11 to 13.

We remain very attentive to private organizations, such as the French Open in padel.

We are in contact with the organizers and they are very transparent with Claude Baigts, the President of the French Open of Padel.

The FFT has date constraints and the fact that the Pau stage is on the same date as that of Perpignan is obviously very unfortunate. If we could have avoided it we would have done it.

But the Pau stage will also be in the city center and therefore we do not have full control of the dates.

We have to develop the practice. We are not in opposition at all. The stages in Toulouse or Perpignan are very beautiful. To date, they do not meet the specifications of the French Tennis Federation and we are obviously very focused on this second edition of the FFT PADEL TOUR.

  • The stages of FFT Padel Tour change every year?

For the sake of practice development, the FFT PADEL TOUR is not intended to be in the same cities year after year, the same goes for the clubs of padel.

The idea is to offer maximum visibility to padel and therefore to request new sites each year.

Regarding new sites, Brittany will be an area to go to. This year we were not far from it. We should expect next year a great step in this region.

  • Clubs of padel consider that the specifications of the FFT PADEL TOUR is too restrictive.

In the development of FFT PADEL TOUR, we are very careful about this point.

I would like to tell the clubs that we are evolving and that there will be change. The specifications may still be a little too restrictive for private structures.

Next year, the specifications may be further reduced. The FFT is listening and we work with and for the clubs.

  • Relations between the FFT and the FIP (Fédération Internationale de Padel)

Relationships are very good. France is part of the executive office of the FIP and therefore the FFT can provide assistance and expertise on an international level. I think we can do even better.

We have to manage to coordinate better, to work together more. I think it is desirable to encourage the sharing of good practices.

We must work on teaching, refereeing and the development of padel starting with the basics. And today, I am working so that the FIP increases the connection between all of its members.

  •  “Start at the bottom”, what exactly do you mean?

We should better homogenize the different regulations between all members of the FIP, for example. Work on the structuring and development of schools padel. We can see that each Federation is isolated and is moving forward relatively alone.

We should coordinate the good practices of the different federations. There may be federations like the FFT that have done good things. And the FFT is ready to share what it has managed to do. But it also takes success.

Our wish is also to help the new countries which integrate the family of padel.

Franck Binisti

Franck Binisti discovers the padel at the Club des Pyramides in 2009 in the Paris region. Since padel is part of his life. You often see him touring France going to cover the major events of padel French.