Rugby. From the bench to the golf course, the new life of Nicolas Vial-Pailler

Since leaving Valence d’Agen, Nicolas Vial-Pailler has radically changed sport and life. (©Icon Sport)

We left him at the end of last season, when he announced his departure from Valence d’Agen (Federal 1), somewhat tired of rugby and eager to see “something else”. At 39, the former manager Nicolas Vial Pailleralso passed by Gourdon, Trélissac, Périgueux, the national team of Tunisia or Limoges and Sarlat, decided to “totally” cut with the world of ovality, without regret, and now devotes himself to his second passion, the Golf.

“This new daily life makes me feel good. I have more time to enjoy life and my daughters and I no longer need to schedule my schedule around rugby. From now on, I do what I want, when I want,” confides the person concerned to Rugby News. “For now, I’m fine and I don’t miss rugby. It’s a new life that suits me perfectly and in which I am completely fulfilled. I feel like I have time and I also devote myself to my work which is also my passion. Today, I can’t see myself coaching a rugby team and talking to players. »

More than 25 competitions on 15 different golf courses, since last May

Since last May he moved away from the world of rugby, “NVP”, fired at the club ofEssendieras (Dordogne), one already disputed “more than 25 competitions on 15 different golf courses”. “I need to feel that adrenaline and constantly test myself on new courses, get out of my comfort zone, rather than playing the same golf course all the time,” he explains. “I don’t play golf to walk the cart… I prefer to put myself to the test by doing competition to the fullest. »

At the end of June, the adopted Périgourdin, but originally from Isère, who grew up in Saint-Marcellin, even spent 10 days in Los Angeles (United States) to play on the most famous golf courses in the world, such as that of Torrey Pines where stars Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy train. And in November, he will fly to Ireland, with his cousin, to discover “2-3 golf courses of anthology”, notes the one who also hits the small ball a lot with Pierre Lafitte, professional rugby player in Soyaux-Angoulême (Pro D2) .

Nicolas Vial-Pailler is progressing at high speed, since he is already index 10 (the index corresponds to the differential between the Par, the ideal number of strokes to be made on a hole, and your ability to do so). “I even played 5 over par on a course and in the last three competitions I was between 5 and 7 under par. The index calculation system is complex in golf, now I regularly play below 10, but they take the average of the 8 best competitions, so be patient, “said the person, who hopes to get closer to level 0, corresponding to the score of professional players. “I aspire to be a confirmed simple player. Today, there are plenty of non-professional players, business leaders or employees, who are index 1 or 2 and give their all, without making it their job. »

A level that will offer him the opportunity to contest his first professional tournament, from September 28 to 30, in Novara (Italy). “I was invited by a Franco-Swiss professional golfer, Arthur Ameil-Planchin to take part in the Alps Open Tour, the third European professional level. I could see live what is best on the continental level, with all the best young people. »

“In golf, you are alone in front of yourself, unlike rugby…”

Depending on his schedule, the business owner tries to play golf at least 3 or 4 times a week. “Thanks to my job, I have the chance to be mobile, so I play a little in all golf courses. When I go on a business meeting, I try to free up some free time and organize myself to do a short course, but it never comes before work. »

Videos: currently on Actu

A discipline that Nicolas Vial-Pailler nevertheless discovered late, in February 2021, thanks to Jerome Pradelle, the coach in charge of the defense of Valence d’Agen. “He brought me in and it hit home straight away,” recalls Nicolas Vial-Pailler. “Golf is like life, you have to persevere, because you are alone with yourself, unlike rugby. If I play a bad shot, I can only blame myself, and if I take risks and it doesn’t work, it’s because I played badly. That’s what excites me. »

Nicolas Vial Pailler
Nicolas Vial-Pailler is now having fun on the golf courses. (©DR)

A sport in the middle of nature where he is alone with his destiny and where he has rediscovered himself. “It allowed me to really know who I was and what I was worth. This is the big difference with rugby, a team sport. When you’re a coach, you think you’ve won things that you ultimately don’t control… It’s an illusion, since you’re subject to the parameters of arbitration, to your opponent, and even to the desire of your players, according to whether or not they believe in your project… Today, I am faced with myself and my little ball. And I don’t believe in myself, it’s dead, because no one is going to believe it for me, ”says the former technician, before continuing:

Golf is one of the toughest sports in the world mentally because, overnight, your performance can be completely chewed up, while you haven’t changed a thing in your movement. In professional tournaments, it’s sometimes played one shot apart. It’s an excellent school for life, because life is what you have to preserve to achieve your dreams, even if there are times that are more difficult than others.

Nicolas Vial PaillerFormer manager of Valence d’Agen

“Golf is all about perseverance and hard work”

A second passion where Nicolas Vial-Pailler, a man of challenges, has experienced quite dazzling progress: “It’s just perseverance and hard work. When I do something, I do it all the time, otherwise it’s useless. It’s my perfectionist and solitary side, and golf fits perfectly with that, because you have to be demanding of yourself. »

Through this new discipline, “NVP” also combines business with pleasure, since it takes advantage of golf to do business. “It happens to me regularly to do business on courses”, explains the one who is a broker in financial investments and manages the company NVP Courtage. Moreover, the invitation of professional golfer Arthur Ameil-Planchin to participate in the Alps Tour Golf is not insignificant, since the latter is a client of his company.

And even if the former manager takes great pleasure in hitting the little ball and likes to rub shoulders with the best golfers on the continent, he intends to remain an amateur. “I’m so passionate about my job that I don’t want to do anything else. But this sport offers the possibility of participating in very high level tournaments, even when you are an amateur, so it is already something fantastic to accompany Arthur to Italy. And I’m going there to make the most of it! »

Was this article helpful to you? Note that you can follow Actu Rugby in the My Actu space. In one click, after registration, you will find all the news of your favorite cities and brands.

Leave a Comment