World Swimming Championships: two new records, triple gold medallist, Léon Marchand de rêve

Three events, three gold medals. Léon Marchand won his third world title at the World Aquatics Championships in Fukuoka on Thursday, July 27 in the 200m individual medley. With a European record at stake. But who can stop the Frenchman?

Léon Marchand makes the sign three with his fingers, like his three gold medals won at these world championships in Tokyo. REUTERS - MARKO DJURICA

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France's Léon Marchand won his third title at the World Aquatics Championships by dominating the 200m 4 medley on Thursday in Fukuoka (Japan). By winning in 1'54''82, he set a new European record for the distance and became the only French swimmer to hold five world crowns.

After the 400m 4 medley at the beginning of these Worlds, on which he stole the world record from Michael Phelps, and the 200m butterfly on Wednesday, Marchand adds a fifth gold medal to his palmares, a year after his first two titles, already in the 200m individual medley and the 400m individual medley. He won ahead of two Britons: Duncan Scott, second and relegated to more than a second, and Tom Dean.

Once again, the 21-year-old from Toulouse, a student of Bob Bowman, the former mentor of the legend Phelps, made the difference thanks to supersonic flows, where he each time created impressive gaps with his competitors. He took advantage of this final to beat, for the fourth time in his career, the France record of the distance, and also took the old European record of the Hungarian Laszlo Cseh. Marchand was four hundredths better than the 1'55''22 achieved by Cseh at the 2008 World Championships in Rome, fifteen years ago.

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