Mehdy Metella Crushes French Record in 100 Fly with World-leading 50.85

2019 French Elite National Championships – 50M

Men’s 100 Butterfly

  • FINA “A” cut: 51.96
  • Time to achieve in prelims to qualify for Worlds: 51.81
  • French record: 51.06 – Mehdy Metella (CN Marseille) – 28/07/2017 – Budapest (HUN)


  1. Mehdy Metella (CN Marseille) – 50.85
  2. Jérémy Stravius (Amiens Métropole Nat.) – 52.05
  3. Jeremy Desplanches (SUI, Olympic Nice Natation) – 52.28
  4. Nans Roch (CN Antibes) – 52.87

In his final at-bat at the 2019 French Elite National Championships in Rennes, Marseille’s Medhy Metella blasted a 50.85 to win the 100 fly. It was his first time under the 51-second barrier and it lowered his own French National Record by .19. Metella was 1.07 seconds faster than he’d been when he won this event a year ago. His performance is the only 100 fly under 51 seconds so far this year and it puts him within 1.03 of Michael Phelps’ 2009 World Record of 49.82.

2018-2019 LCM MEN 100 FLY

49.50 *WR
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Metella’s new record is due entirely to the second half of his race. By going out 1/10 slower than in Budapest, where he last set the French mark, he was able to come home .31 faster. It was the first time he broke 27 seconds on the back half, splitting

Metella’s top 10 performances in the 100 fly:

Time 1st 50 2nd 50 Meet location Date
50.85* 24.02 26.83 RENNES 21/04/2019
51.06* 23.92 27.14 BUDAPEST 28/07/2017
51.16* 23.62 27.54 BUDAPEST 29/07/2017
51.24* 23.85 27.39 GLASGOW 9/8/2018
51.24* 24.05 27.19 KAZAN 8/8/2015
51.36* 23.85 27.51 SCHILTIGHEIM 27/05/2017
51.39* 24.14 27.25 KAZAN 7/8/2015
51.46 24.25 27.21 BUDAPEST 28/07/2017
51.51 24.14 27.37 CHARTRES 2/7/2017
51.58 24.24 27.34 RIO DE JANEIRO 12/8/2016

*French National Record

Metella had already qualified to swim the 100 fly at 2019 World Championships thanks to his podium finish at 2018 European Championships. Still, he hit the qualifying time in prelims, going 51.51, but he was the only French swimmer to do so. Jérémy Stravius of Amiens missed the cut by .19, going 52.00 in the morning.


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2 years ago

Huge swim! Gonna be an exciting 100 fly field as we approach Tokyo.

2 years ago

We need a black male to win at world champs or the Olympic level, individually!!

Reply to  Hswimmer
2 years ago

I’m not sure we need” a black World champ, the medals are irrelevant. I think we just need more black/brown faces for black/brown children to see when watching swimming on TV. That would do so much to get more children from those backgrounds learning to swim.

Reply to  Dee
2 years ago

You’re both right

Reply to  Dee
2 years ago

My statement is still not wrong…

Reply to  Dee
2 years ago

I don’t know about France or GB but as far as I know all kids in Germany have swimming classes in elementary school + sadly I don’t think that the kids who don’t know how to swim are the ones who will be sitting at home with their parents and a cup of warm chocolate watching swimming competitions … + the families with children who don’t know how to swim are probably the families that don’t have a lot of money, so for those kids it will always be far more interesting to start playing football/basketball because there is so much more money in those sports.

It is a nice sentiment, but I don’t really think that it is much… Read more »

Reply to  AnEn
2 years ago

in general people don’t pick which sport they’ll play based on the amount of money they would make at the professional level. When I got to the point where I had to start choosing between sports, my considerations were basically just around which one was more fun/more friends involved. When baseball season started to conflict with summer swim season, I didn’t consider MLB salaries when picking which one I would keep doing.

Reply to  Dee
2 years ago

I’m not sure this black people can’t swim phenomenon exists much outside the US.

Reply to  Troy
2 years ago

There was a recent film about the phenomenon created by a UK-based filmmaker, Ed Acura. So, it at least exists there as well to some degree:

Reply to  Troy
2 years ago

I can assure you it does. In the UK a national survey back in 2012 and found that, of people identifying as “black Caribbean”, more could not swim than could swim. “Black African” number was similar. People of every other background had at least about 2/3s knowing how to swim.

Reply to  Troy
2 years ago

Also in SA

Cheatin Vlad
Reply to  Dee
2 years ago

I think at the end of the day we are talking about providing the opportunity and access to people around the globe to participate and excel in the sport of swimming.

Reply to  Dee
2 years ago

France has long had one of the more multicultural teams of the top nations in swimming. Malia Metella, Coralie Balmy both Olympic medalists, Diane Bui Duyet, Pacific islander and world record holder, Julien Sicot and Mehdy Metella, world championship medalists. Plenty of national teamers as well.

Reply to  Hswimmer
2 years ago

1988 Olympic Champion in the 100m Fly – Anthony Nesty

Mr Piano
Reply to  Hswimmer
2 years ago

He ain’t beating Dressel.

Coach Mike 1952
Reply to  Mr Piano
2 years ago

DIfferent era

2 years ago

Amazing swim, but is the “He’s now 1.03 seconds away from the WR” take really necessary? Bottom line is that record is ridiculous and he really isn’t that close to it.

Anyway swimming is getting FAST this year. Obviously some will underperform come worlds but a final of Dressel, Le Clos, Guy, Milak, Schooling, Metella, and Li is ridiculous. All those guys can go sub 51 and I’m definitely missing some names as well. Some of them can easily not even make the final as there are several up and comes in this event like Lanza and Kusch. This event is stacked now…

Reply to  IM FAN
2 years ago

I think you only named 7 guys, so one spot in the final would still be open + many of the guys you mentioned (Guy, Schooling, Li) haven’t shown anything recently that suggests that they are capable of sub 51, on the other hand I have a strong feeling that Minakov will make the final. I am too lazy to look it up, but I think Codia has the fastest time since the beginning of 2018 and you also didn’t mention him …
Edit: Codia only has the 2nd fastest time, Dressel was about 0.1 seconds faster than him last year. As far as I saw none out of Guy, Milak, Schooling or Li has been sub 51 since… Read more »

Reply to  AnEn
2 years ago

Milak will be in the final, Guy and Schooling probably not. Who knows about Li and Codia? I think Kusch makes it

Reply to  DEAN IS GOD
2 years ago

Would be very happy if Kusch would make it. In my opinion 51.35 must be pretty close to his peak, I think the realistic best case scenario for him would be to swim 51.5 at the world championships and I am not sure whether this will be enough to make the final.

About Anne Lepesant

Anne Lepesant

Anne Lepesant is the mother of four daughters, all of whom swim/swam in college. With an undergraduate degree from Princeton (where she was an all-Ivy tennis player) and an MBA from INSEAD, she worked for many years in the financial industry, both in France and the U.S. Anne is currently …

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