Tatiana Geiselmann (Grand Est correspondent) / Photo credit: Damien MEYER / AFP 10:31 am, July 28, 2023

The young and new prodigy of French swimming, Léon Marchand, wowed the sphere of chlorinated water pools with his performances at the World Championships in Fukuoka, Japan. In France, the French do not hide their admiration for the 21-year-old swimmer, as in Schiltigheim, Alsace.

The Paris 2024 Olympics are still far away, but they already have their French star: Léon Marchand. The Toulouse swimmer won first place yesterday in the 200m 4 medley at the World Championships in Fukuoka, Japan. It was his third world title in a week and his fifth overall.

The 21-year-old prodigy even broke the 400m 4 medley world record on Sunday, smashing that of Michael Phelps. Enough to give birth to a real "Marchand mania" among the French, as Europe 1 was able to see at the exit of the Olympic swimming pool of Schiltigheim, in Alsace.

The new sporting darling of the French

Towel on his shoulder and after having chained three kilometers of swimming, Adrien is one of the fans of the first hour. "It's great to have a young champion who now surpasses Phelps. Then we hope that at the Olympics, it will be the best, "says the 37-year-old proudly. It must be said that this Strasbourgeois is a lifeguard by trade. So swimming, he knows this discipline by heart.

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Laura started doing breaststrokes once a week at the beginning of the year. But she too already follows the French mascot. "I had heard about him quite recently finally, but as soon as there are French people who stand out, of course, we are chauvinistic. You have to put up with them," said the woman, who is already a fan of the swimmer.

The city of Toulouse where he is from is so proud of its swimmer that with each victory, the mayor lights up the Capitol with the colors of his club, green and white.