Born in Melun (France) in 1981, 45 kms from Paris, Bertrand ‘ElkY’ Grospellier spent his childhood moving between several smaller regional towns, between the cities of Melun and Nancy. His father, a banking consultant, was required to relocate occasionally for his career, whereas his mother gave up work when Bertrand was born in order to look after him. This provided the young Bertrand with a stable, middle-class upbringing in semi- rural France. As a teen, Bertrand was:
“mostly a really good boy” who did well in school, especially in Physics, Chemistry, Mathematics and Philosophy even though “some teenage years [his] focus wasn’t exactly on school ;)”.
He achieved his BAC Scientific – the French system’s science specialisation stream for the high school diploma in France and was offered a place in a preparatory school for the entry exams of the French ‘Grandes Ecoles’, the equivalent of US Ivy League Universities. Bertrand had been contemplating becoming a Vet or an Engineer. Although he wasn’t a really keen sportsman, Bertrand did go horse riding, play tennis, biking and karting for fun, until he was injured in two of these sports – breaking his clavicle after a fall from a horse and injuring his knee from a bike accident.