2012 Olympic Champ Yannick Agnel Officially Announces Retirement

French swimming star and 2012 Olympic gold medalist Yannick Agnel has officially announced his retirement from the sport. Agnel had already announced his intent to retire this year even before the 2016 Olympics.

Agnel took to social media today to officialize his retirement. He posted a farewell letter to his Facebook page and linked to the message from his official Twitter account. In the post, Agnel thanks his family, friends and fans while expressing excitement about his future endeavors.

The Facebook post is in Agnel’s native French. You can find it here. Agnel says his stomach is “in knots” as he writes, but also expresses excitement for the next phase of life. “It is time to sail on to other horizons,” he writes, in a rough translation of the French. “Life is full of too many riches and curiosities to confine it to chlorinated water.”

“It has been an immense pride and honor to represent my country through these competitions,” he writes.

Agnel was a nearly unstoppable force in the 200 free for a few years, winning the 2012 Olympic gold as well as the 2013 World Championships title. He was part of France’s run of dominance in the 4×100 free relay, joining that team for gold in 2012 and 2013. Beginning in 2014, though, Agnel’s star faded. He slid to bronze in the 200 free at the 2014 European Championships, withdrew from the 2015 World Championships and then barely scraped his way into the 2016 Rio Olympics.

He remains one of France’s most decorated swimmers internationally. He also still holds the short course 400 meter freestyle world record, which he set at French Nationals in 2012.

In This Story

10
Leave a Reply

7 Comment threads
3 Thread replies
0 Followers
 
Most reacted comment
Hottest comment thread
9 Comment authors
newest oldest most voted
BaldingEagle

Good luck. As the Australian presenter on official Olympic feed from the 2012 relay said, “And Agnel, what a talent.” He was certainly missed by his countrymen in the relays recently. A (mentally, emotionally) healthy Agnel would have been something to see this year, and would have made that relay even more of a barn-burner.

G.I.N.A

How do you decide he was not mentally & emotionally healthy this year? There is nothing wrong & indeed a lot of logic in stoppi g this black line stuff. .I only hope they get out before they go i to Post Traumatic Swimming Disorder where they can never enjoh swimming again . According to Bobo Yannick is quite the cerebral type . But if you’ve had enough then even a top mind cannot convince the body – or vice versa. I hope to see him maybe in Tahiti or New Caledonia swimming freely .I have come to think the only reason to have swum all tnose laps is to swim for hours in the clear warm ocean & look… Read more »

riley

Gonna miss Agnel. He seemed like a really genuine guy that couldn’t shake the Yips (and I think a lot of us swimmers can emphasize with that feeling). Good luck with future endeavors.

swimdoc

I wish I could “yip” my way to a couple Olympic golds.

riley

Agreed, meant no disrespect to Agnel or anyone in that 2012 final…just saying he really lost that swagger after that race. And swimming is a cerebral sport that can be cruel for those like Agnel that aren’t ready to be the hunted as opposed to the hunter

bobthebuilderrocks

You were a great swimmer and an even greater man, Agnel. Good luck with your future endeavors.

About Jared Anderson

Jared Anderson

Jared Anderson just can’t stay away from the pool. A competitive career of almost two decades wasn’t enough for this Minnesotan, who continues to get his daily chlorine fix. A lifelong lover of writing, Jared now combines the two passions as Senior Reporter for SwimSwam.com, covering swimming at every level. He’s an …

Read More »

Don't want to miss anything?

Subscribe to our newsletter and receive our latest updates!