Countdown to Paris: 3 Local Athletes to Watch at the 2024 Summer Games

07.09.2024 Jessica Sloan5 min

After much anticipation, the 2024 Summer Games in Paris are only weeks away. With more than 500 athletes tabbed to represent the United States in competition, USA athletes will once again bring one of the largest contingents—and brightest spotlights—of any country competing in Paris. These local athletes in Paris will look to bring home the gold and bring attention to their sports and their hometowns.

While stars like Simone Biles and Katie Ledecky have become household names among American audiences, the team is filled with lesser-known athletes chasing glory in their particular sport—as well as a handful of athletes making their debut in a new event.

Before the action begins, take a moment to familiarize yourself with some up-and-coming athletes hailing from hometowns near or in a few of Cox Media’s markets. Here are three local athletes in Paris that you’ll want to root for when the games begin:

Katie Grimes, Swimming

Three years ago, at only 15 years old, Katie Grimes made history as the youngest athlete to represent the U.S. for the Summer Games in Tokyo. Today, she’s still only 18 and set to appear in her second straight Games, making her the youngest two-time athlete at the Games for America in nearly 50 years.

After placing fourth and just missing out on a medal in the 800m freestyle in her debut, Grimes has set her sights on returning home to Las Vegas, Nevada with hardware in hand. She will once again compete in the 800m freestyle, and may also contribute on relay teams throughout the swimming competition.

Victor Montalvo, Breakdancing

Victor Montalvo isn’t only a first-time Summer Games athlete. He’s a first-timer competing in a first-time event, where he’ll try to ride the momentum of his 2023 world championship to a gold-medal finish for the U.S.

Originally from Kissimmee, Florida, Montalvo heads to Paris with pedigree in his favor: His father and uncle played a significant role in popularizing breakdancing in Mexico during the 1980s, which has contributed to the event’s gradual rise in participation around the globe. The 30-year-old is America’s top-ranked breakdancer, and the country’s best shot at winning the first gold in this new Games competition.

Griffin Colapinto, Surfing

Surfing already has a strong global following. And Griffin Colapinto was already accomplished as one of the sport’s top competitors. The top-ranked U.S. surfer enters the Games after placing third at the 2023 World Surf League Championship, and he has since risen to become the highest-ranked surfer in the world.

With those credentials comes pressure to perform. But the San Clemente, California native has proven time and again that he can rise to the challenge. He’s also a big advocate for mental health, working with the nonprofit “To Write Love on Her Arms” to spread awareness of the need for mental health services and support.

Keep an eye out during this year’s Games—including during the opening ceremony—to catch these athletes representing the U.S. and going for gold.

With high viewership and engagement across virtually every demographic group, the 17-day Summer Games in Paris offers an unparalleled opportunity to connect with local audiences through targeting ad campaigns.

There’s still time left to finalize media buys and pull together an ad strategy that builds your local brand and delivers impact for your business during sporting events like the Games and many others with similar audiences. Not sure where to start? Cox Media’s experts are here to help. Contact us today to get started!

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Jessica Sloan

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