Disclaimer: BlueSeventy Swim of the Week is not meant to be a conclusive selection of the best overall swim of the week, but rather one Featured Swim to be explored in deeper detail. The BlueSeventy Swim is an opportunity to take a closer look at the context of one of the many fast swims this week, perhaps a swim that slipped through the cracks as others grabbed the headlines, or a race we didn’t get to examine as closely in the flood of weekly meets.
Last year in the 10k open water marathon Olympic final in Rio, French open water ace Aurélie Muller hit the touchpad second, but was ultimately disqualified for obstructing third swimmer Rachele Bruni‘s finish in the final moments. (Watch the finish below, starting at 14:00).
This week, Muller avenged her heartbreaking Rio swim by finishing first at the 10k at the 2017 FINA World Championships in Budapest. This time around, the finish was both smooth and uncontroversial, as she came into the finish in 2:00:13.7, a full 3.5 seconds ahead of second-place Samantha Arevalo. The swim resulted in Muller’s second-ever world title, defending her 2015 FINA World Championship 10k gold from Kazan. Muller also came in well ahead of defending Olympic champion Sharon van Rouwendaal, who finished sixteen seconds ahead of the pack in Rio, but fell to sixteenth place this week in Budapest.
Muller’s swim this week, coupled with a 5k world championship gold medal from her teammate Marc-Antoine Olivier, helps to solidify France as a world open water superpower. In an era where France qualified just 10 total swimmers for the World Championships, their open water results this week show that the country is still a true titan in the sport.
Though the 10k is her primary event, we will see Muller back in action in the women’s 5k on Wednesday, the mixed 5k relay Thursday, and the 25k on Friday. You can see open water start lists here. Muller will also take to the pool in the women’s 1500 at the end of the month.
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