Mehdy Metella is a French butterfly and freestyle specialist born in Cayenne in the French Guiana. He followed in his sister, Malia’s, footsteps earning a silver medal at the 2016 Rio Olympics to match hers from the 2004 Athens Olympics. His came as a member of the 4×100 meter freestyle relay while hers came in the 50 meter freestyle. Metella has racked up a collection of international medals, mostly as part of France’s relay teams. At the 2015 World Championships, he was part of the 4×100 meter freestyle relay to win gold.
Metella trains at Dauphins Toulouse OEC in Toulouse, France.
Metella made his international long course debut aged 22 at the 2012 European Championships. He took the place of Yannick Angel on the 4×100 meter freestyle relay to claim gold. Two years later, he was a member of the Frence team that defended the european 4×100 meter freestyle crown.
2015 World Championships
Metella qualified for the 100 meter butterfly at the World Championships with his performance at the French Nationals. But his disappointing sixth place finish in the 100 meter freestyle, put him out of the relay in Kazan. A month later at the France Golden Tour stop in Nancy, Metella made a bold statement. He swam a 48.44 (half a second quicker than his time at Nationals) to take the gold. That time was the fastest of a French man that year and moved him up to 10th in the world standings for the year. With that, he booked his place on the relay team in Kazan.
In Kazan, Metella joined Florent Manaudou, Fabien Gilot and Jeremy Stravius to take the gold medal in the 4×100 meter freestyle relay. Metella got France off to a flying start, finishing the first leg tied second with a split of 48.37.Manaudou took the lead on the second leg and the race was France’s for the rest of the way. They took the gold in 3:10.74. In the 4×100 medley relay, Metella had the fastest butterfly split in the field. His 50.39 helped France to a bronze in 3:30.50.
In his individual event, 100 meter butterfly, Metella broke the French record in the final to finish 5th in 51.24.
2016 European Championships
In his last stop before Rio, Metella was in London for the European Championships. He took the bronze medal in 100 meter butterfly in 51.70. He also added a silver medal as a part of the 4×100 meter medley relay
2016 Rio Olympics
In Rio, Metella rejoined his world champion teammates in the 4×100 meter freestyle relay. With USA making the final this time, France had to settle for the silver. Again, Metella lead off for France and put them in first with a 48.08 split. They dropped down to fourth after the second leg, but Manaudou and Stravius brought it home for France to finish second in 3:10.53.
In the 100 meter butterfly final, Metella finished 6th in 51.58. France didn’t make it out of the heats in the 4×100 meter medley, so Metella didn’t get his chance to swim that event.
2017 World Championships
Metella won his first individual World Championship medal with a bronze in the 100 meter freestyle. He finished in 47.89, just 0.02 behind Nathan Adrian who took the silver. In the 100 meter butterfly he finished 8th in 51.16.