Blume Speeds To 24.28 In 50Fr; Marchand And Ndoye Brouard End On A High In Marseille

Pernille Blume; Photo Courtesy: Rob Schumacher-USA TODAY Sports

Pernille Blume sped to a 24.28 victory in the 50 free, Leon Marchand finished a fine meet that indicates exciting times to come in 2021 and beyond and Yohann Ndoye Brouard sealed the backstroke hat-trick as the FFN Golden Tour concluded in Marseille.

Link to results

Olympic champion Blume went second in the early-season rankings behind Sarah Sjostrom and her 24.07 blast in February.

A battle unfolded behind the Dane with Femke Heemskerk edging Melanie Henique by 0.01, touching in 24.72 to 24.73 with the Frenchwoman on her way to Tokyo.

Marie Wattel, who had won the 100fr in a speedy 53.32, was fourth in 24.93 before going on to win the 100 fly.

Marchand To Continue Fine Family Tradition

His father, Xavier Marchand, represented France at the 1996 Games in Atlanta and four years later in Sydney in a career that brought world and European 200IM medals and mother, Celine Bonnet, competed at Barcelona in 1992.


Leon Marchand: Photo Courtesy: KMSP/Stéphane Kempinaire

The 18-year-old booked his place for Tokyo in the 200IM on Friday before lowering his own national 400IM record to 4:14.97 although his focus was on how he could eradicate “a few small mistakes” in order to further reduce his time.

A 1:57.66 blast in the 200 fly prelims on Sunday hinted at more to come and he lowered that to 1:56.33 – good enough for fifth in the rankings, between seasoned international competitors Daiya Seto and James Guy.

Seto and Guy own three Olympic and 15 world medals between them with Marchand now taking his place in senior international waters.

Not only does that beg the question of what will happen over the coming months but also at a home Games in Paris three years hence.

Marchand led from start to finish ahead of Ondrej Gemov of the Czech Republic (1:58.32) and Xaver Gschwentner of Austria (1:59.14).

The teenager though still has some way to go before he threatens the French record of 1:54.62 set by 1992 Olympic bronze medallist Franck Esposito way back in April 2002.

Ndoye Brouard Seals Backstroke Treble


Yohann Ndoye Brouard: Photo Courtesy: (KMSP / Stéphane Kempinaire)

Ndoye Brouard has had a memorable meet which has underlined his fine promise with more to come.

The 20-year-old became the third Frenchman after Camille Lacourt and Jeremy Stravius – who shared the 2011 world title – to dip inside 53secs over 100 back when he went 52.97 on Friday.

He followed that up with a French record of 1:56.10 in the 200 back from lane one for a two-pronged programme in Tokyo, four months hence.

Come Sunday and a one-length blast of 25.04 brought him his third victory of the weekend as he moved joint second in the rankings alongside Apostolos Christou of Greece and Hungarian Benedek KovacsJunya Koga the only man inside 25secs so far in 2021 in 24.96.

Mewen Tomac – who also posted the consideration time over 100m on Friday – was joint second in 25.21 with Christou who claimed his third medal of the meet.

Jeremy Stravius – who won his first senior international medal at the 2009 European short-course a fortnight after Ndoye Brouard had turned nine – was fourth in 25.51.

Bonnet Takes 200 Free; Bouchaut Dominates 400

Foto Fabio Ferrari/LaPresse 20 Dicembre 2019 Las Vegas - USA sport nuoto 2019 ISL - International Swimming League Nella foto: BONNET Charlotte Photo Fabio Ferrari/LaPresse December 20, 2019 Las Vegas - USA sport swimming 2019 ISL - International Swimming League In the picture: BONNET Charlotte

Charlotte Bonnet: Photo Courtesy: Fabio Ferrari/LaPresse

Charlotte Bonnet led from start to finish to win the 200 free in 1:56.77 – a time bettered only by Yang Junxuan and Katie Ledecky in 2021.

The European champion was never threatened, splitting 26.73/29.29/30.31/30.44 to finish inside the FINA A time.

World champion Federica Pellegrini had second spot to herself throughout to stop the clock at 1:57.64.

Bonnet’s time though was outside the 1:56.63 needed to book a spot on the team for Tokyo although there were words of experience rather than disappointment.

She told the French Swimming Federation:

“I can hardly be disappointed because this is the third time in four months that I have swam in 1’56.

“After the FFN Golden Tour-Camille Muffat in Nice, I was very disappointed with my time.

“With Fabrice (Pellerin), we took the time to study the plans for previous seasons and we realised that it was rare for me to swim 1’56 in December, February and March.

“It bodes well for the rest of the season. I would obviously have preferred to do the qualifying time tonight and join the Olympic qualifiers, but I also know that my season does not end in March.

“It is this summer that we will have to be very strong. So no, I can’t be disappointed!”

Joris Bouchaut dominated the 400 free to win in 3:48.14 – third in the world in 2021.

Danys Rapsys, winner of the 200fr, was second in 3:51.01 with Mehdi Lagili rounding out the top three in 3:51.37.

Clement Mignon came from second behind Jesse Puts at halfway to win the 100 free in 48.78 ahead of Maxime Grousset who clocked 48.85.

Mehdy Metella moved from seventh at the turn to finish third in 49.05 following a second-50 blast of 25.14, the fastest in the field.

Kamminga Wraps Up 100-200br Double


Arno Kamminga: Photo Courtesy: Andrea Staccioli / Deepbluemedia / Insidefoto

Arno Kamminga underlined his consistency in a meet marked by speedy heat swims by the Netherlands athlete.

Second in the 50 was followed by a 2:08.08 over 200br on Saturday before a 59.09 100 prelim on Sunday.

Kamminga then split 27.96/31.24 for a clear victory in 59.20 ahead of Caba Siladji (1:00.81) and Andrius Sidlauskas (1:00.99).

Anna Egorova and Anastassia Kirpitchnikova fought out an 800 free that was the embodiment of a stroke-for-stroke tussle, so much so that the pair both turned at 500m on 5:19.08.

Egorova was 0.04 ahead with 200 to go which she extended to 0.11 with 100 remaining to stop the clock at 8:27.51 ahead of her fellow Russian who touched in 8:27.79.

Marlene Kahler of Austria was almost 12secs adrift in third in 8:39.70.

A second 50 of 31.23 propelled Wattel past Maaike de Waard to victory in the 100 fly, the Frenchwoman stopping the clock at 58.04 ahead of De Waard (58.99) and Georgia Damasioti (1:00.48).

Kotryna Teterevkova of Lithuania won the women’s 100br in 1:07.81 ahead of 200br winner Lisa Mamie who clocked 1:08.31.

Kira Toussaint completed the backstroke treble with victory in the 200 in 2:12.06.



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