Francois Gauthier Drapeau in a blue judo outfit holds his hands on his hipsIJF/Emanuele Di Feliciantonio
IJF/Emanuele Di Feliciantonio

François Gauthier-Drapeau


François Gauthier-Drapeau will head to his first Olympic Games at Paris 2024 ranked fifth in the world in the men’s 81kg category. He has been on the rise since returning to international competition in 2021 after coming back from a knee injury in 2018 and the forced break of the COVID-19 pandemic. Gauthier-Drapeau has filled the space left in the 81kg weight class by the man who is now his coach, 2012 Olympic bronze medallist Antoine Valois-Fortier, who retired in 2021.

In March 2024, Gauther-Drapeau advanced to his first career Grand Slam final in Antalya. Facing the reigning Olympic champion, Takanori Nagase, Gauthier-Drapeau fought a close match, but came away with the silver medal. It followed his six career Grand Slam bronze medals, which includes two in Paris (2023, 2024), two in Tel Aviv (2022, 2023), one in Antalya (2023), and the first he won in Baku in 2021.  

Gauthier-Drapeau earned his first international title at the 2023 Pan American Championships. He followed up that gold with a silver medal in 2024. Gauthier-Drapeau brought home a silver medal from the 2022 Commonwealth Games after falling to England’s Lachlan Moorhead in the final.

A Little More About François

Outside Interests: Has a bachelor’s degree in engineering… 

Notable International Results

Commonwealth Games: 2022 – SILVER (81kg)

IJF World Championships: 2024 – R3; 2023 – 5th (81kg); 2022 - R1

Pan American Championships: 2024 – SILVER (81kg); 2023 – GOLD (81kg); 2022 – BRONZE (81kg)