French sprinter Florent Manaudou and his teammates from the Cercle des Nageurs de Marseille (CNM) put in an appearance at the “4e Meeting Olympique de Courbevoie MOC 2016” in a suburb of Paris over the weekend. This is the penultimate tune-up competition for the Marseille sprinters before they head to Montpellier for French Olympic Trials at the end of March. Two weeks from now they will appear at the third and final leg of the 2016 FFN Golden Tour Camille Muffat in their home pool in Marseille.
Manaudou used the weekend to practice racing his specialty 50m free, the event he won at the 2012 Olympic Games in London, but also the 100m free. Manaudou won both events, clocking a 21.91 in the 50 and a 49.03 in the 100. The fastest he has been in those events this season (since FINA World Championships in Kazan last August) is 21.57 and 47.98.
Manaudou, known primarily as a 50m sprint specialist (he won the LCM 50 free and 50 fly in Kazan in August 2015, and the SCM 50 free and 50 back in Doha in December 2014), finally decided to add the 100 free to his repertoire for Olympic Trials after putting up a world leading 47.98 in Nîmes last December. His goal is become the first swimmer since Russia’s Alexander Popov to achieve the feat of winning both the 50 and 100 freestyles at the same Olympic Games (Popov did it in both 1992 and 1996).
Joining Manaudou in Courbevoie were teammates Frédérick Bousquet, Fabien Gilot, Grégory Mallet, William Meynard, and Giacomo Perez Dortona. Bousquet placed second in the 50 free with 22.41. The 34-year-old is seeking his final Olympic appearance in Rio this summer. Gilot finished second in the 100 free (50.15) and fourth in the 50 (23.21). Mallet won the 200 free (1:49.79) and was sixth in the 50 (23.26) and seventh in the 100 (50.80). Meynard was sixth in both the 50 free (23.26) and 100 free (50.77). Perez Dortona won the 100 breast (1:02.16).