Le nageur Léon Marchand a battu son propre record de France du 200 m brasse, dimanche 11 2023 à Rennes lors des Championnats de France de natation

Léon Marchand breaks the French 200 m breaststroke record

12 June 2023

French swimming has a new hero in Léon Marchand. This talented young swimmer caused a sensation at the French Swimming Championships, beating his own French record in the 200 m breaststroke and setting the best world performance of the year. But who is Léon Marchand? How did he achieve this feat? And what’s at stake for his career? In this blog, we tell you all you need to know about this historic performance and the French swimming prodigy.

Léon Marchand is a 21-year-old French swimmer from Grasse. He began swimming at the age of 5, encouraged by his mother, who had herself practiced the sport at a high level. Léon soon showed a precocious talent for swimming, and was spotted by coaches at the Grasse club because of his technique and physical strength. Since then, he has competed regionally and nationally, winning gold and silver medals all the way up to world level.

But last Sunday, the young French swimming prodigy wrote a new page in his career by breaking his own French record in the 200 m breaststroke. The feat set the world’s best performance of the year and came within a second of the world record.

"It was cool, I went flat out. I had a bit of trouble in the last 50, but that's normal. It was only my second 200 m breaststroke, but I was really sharp, in a nice pool and with real preparation. And I gained 2 seconds on my best time (2'8''76 in 2022), not far from the world record (2'5''95), so that's great."

This impressive time also enabled Léon Marchand to set the best world performance of the year in the 200 m breaststroke, confirming his status as one of the great hopes of French and international swimming. This outstanding performance also enabled Léon Marchand to qualify for the World Swimming Championships. In fact, his time was more than enough to meet the minimum standards set by the French Federation and the International Swimming Federation (FINA). This will be an opportunity for Léon Marchand to take on the world’s best swimmers and defend France’s colors with even greater self-confidence.

But Léon Marchand’s feat would not have been possible without hard work and exemplary discipline. For several years now, the young swimmer has been following a rigorous training program, alternating sessions of swimming, weight training, cardio and mental preparation. He also benefited from the guidance of several top coaches, including Franck Esposito, the national technical director of French swimming, and Laurent Guivarc’h, the coach of his club CN Antibes.

Léon Marchand is a name to remember when it comes to swimming. He has performed remarkably well and proved his talent, and only time will tell what other feats he will achieve. He’ll do it in the pool. Swimming can be an incredibly rewarding activity – both for keeping fit and for building character. At
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