The French Men Show Their Speed!

by Rory Buck (RoryBuck)

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Created April 15th, 2010 04:13:58 PM

Modified April 15th, 2010 04:14:33 PM

The crowd in Saint Raphael was treated to some very fast swimming on the third night of the French National Championship. European record holder, Alain Bernard won the second semi final of the Men’s 100 Freestyle this evening in a fast 48.32, a time that places him at the top of the world’s rankings for 2010. Fabien Gilot won the first semi final in a 48.62, a time that places him 4th on the top times list. William Meynard and Yannick Agnelli also went under 49.00 seconds. Meynard hit the wall in 48.79 and 17 year old Agnelli clocked in at 48.99. The final tomorrow evening is set to be an impressive showdown.

Ophelie-Cyrielle Etienne, the bronze medalist from the Women 400 Free won the 800 Free this evening. Etienne finished the race in 8.33.91 a solid 11 seconds ahead of 2nd place finisher Grainne Murphy. Murphy, a visiting swimmer from Ireland finished in 8.45.04, just managing to out touch Camille Sere (8.45.57) who took bronze. 

Camille Lacourt won the Men’s 50m Backstroke in 24.87, just outside his national record of 24.46. His swim puts him at number three on the worlds top times list. Jeremy Stravius claimed his 2nd silver of the meet in 25.41. Benjamin Stasiulis, who finished 4th in the 100 Back went one better tonight, taking 3rd in 25.68.

Aurore Mongel won the Women’s 200 Fly in 2:09.05. 2008 Beijing USA Olympic team member, Kim Vandenberg finished 2nd overall touching the wall in 2:10.68. Lara Grangeon claimed the bronze medal in 2:11.52.

Top seed, Diogo Carvalho from Portugal took the win in the Men 200 IM finishing in 2.02.93. The first Frenchman home was Arnaud Rondan who finished in 2:03.98 to take 2nd, and Ganesh Pedurand rounded off the top 3 in 2:04.16.

Coralie Balmy was crowned national champion in the Women’s 100m Freestyle when she touched the wall in a time of 55.79. Ophelie-Cyrielle Etienne, winner of the 800 Free earlier this evening showed she had some speed to go with her endurance as she took the silver in 55.98, and Angela Tavernier took the bronze in 56.09.

The Women’s 100 Breastroke was the last final of the evening and it turned out to be a very tight race. Russian, Alena Alekseeva managed to lead Coralie Dobral into the wall finishing in 1:09.73 to Dobral’s 1:09.75! Fanny Babou was also in the race all the way through but had to settle for 3rd after finishing in 1:09.87.


In semi final action:

Alexianne Castel will go into tomorrow nights Women 100m Backstroke final seeded 1st.  After winning the 200 Backstroke final, Castel was the only women to go under 1.01.00 in the semi finals this evening, finishing in 1.00.87. Alexandra Putra, silver medalist in the 200 Back will be the 2nd seed after going 1.10.75. Cloe Credeville will be seeded 3rd on a 1.02.44.

Camille Muffat will go into tomorrows final for the Women’s 200 IM seeded 1st, well ahead of the rest of the field. Muffat put in a solid 2.10.94. Lara Grangeon will go in seeded 2nd in 2.13.38 followed by 50m Backstroke winner, Sophie De Ronchi in 2.14.47.

Winner of the Men’s 100m Breastroke, Hugues Duboscq qualified 1st for the Men 200m Breastroke with a 2:12.25. Visiting Englishman, Kristopher Gilchrest (2.13.62) will be seeded 2nd and Julien Nicolardot (2.15.62) will be seeded 3rd.