Who is Marco Foyot?
Foyot has been the French national champion seven times and also won the country’s junior championship twice. As a member of France’s triples team in World Petanque Championship competition, he has won gold, silver and bronze medals six different times (gold in Italy in 1992, silver in Belgium in 1995, and bronze in Italy in 1988, in France in 1994, in Germany in 1996 and in Portugal in 2000). In addition, he has won numerous competitions in France and across Europe.
How did he get started?
Foyot, 60, starting playing at the age of 11 when he was taught by his dad who presided over a club in Paris.
He says: “I owe it to my father, he created a club in Paris, took care of the young, and he taught me respect. He said: “Marco, in life, be naughty but respect others.”
Why is Marco Foyot important in Petanque?
Foyot is one of the very few Petanque players who makes his living playing the game.
In France, he is so highly regarded that was technical adviser in the just-released movie “Les Invincibles” starring Gerard Depardieu.
What the media says about Marco Foyot:
From a 2010 article in the London Daily Mail:
The most renowned player in the world is Marco Foyot, who transcends not only the game itself but also traditional concepts of style and taste. With his mullet hair, Hawaiian shirts and rainbowprint sweaters, Foyot is part Zen-mystic, part self-promotional genius, part fashion disaster.
Unsurprisingly, he has launched his own clothing line, and has even stormed the French pop charts with his pétanque-themed hit, Cool Ma Boule.
From a Miami Herald column by humorist Dave Barry:
Also on hand at the U.S. (Petanque) Open was Marco Foyot. He's a large, shaggy, surfer dude-looking Frenchman who has won many pétanque honors, including the world championship. He is called ''the Michael Jordan of pétanque,'' primarily by himself. In fact, as far as I could tell, the only thing he can say in English is: ``I am the Michael Jordan of pétanque.''
He was amazed to witness a pétanque tournament in Miami Beach. At one point he made a sweeping arm gesture encompassing the players, the ocean, the Miami Beach police cruiser parked there in case of, I don't know, a riot by the five spectators, and said: ''C'est la Planet Mars!'' (For the record, this is true of Miami Beach even when they're not playing pétanque.) I hung around with Marco for a while, acting as his extremely incompetent interpreter.
When tourists would come up and ask what was going on, he invariably instructed me to inform them that he was the world pétanque champion. I am pretty sure that, if alien beings were to land and encounter Marco, the single thing he would most want them to know about the planet Earth is that he is its pétanque champion.
After a while Marco gave me a little pétanque lesson, and for the record: He is really, really good at it. Wherever you are right now, reading this article, Marco could throw a steel ball underhand from wherever he is and hit you on the head. We both realized that, if we had played an actual game, he would have creamed me.