SwimSwam Pulse: 47.8% Think Marchand Will Own Both IM World Records Within 18 Months

SwimSwam Pulse is a recurring feature tracking and analyzing the results of our periodic A3 Performance Polls. You can cast your vote in our newest poll on the SwimSwam homepage, about halfway down the page on the right side, or you can find the poll embedded at the bottom of this post.

Our most recent poll asked SwimSwam readers if Leon Marchand will take ownership of the world record in the men’s 200 and 400 IM by the end of Paris 2024:

Question: Will Leon Marchand own both men’s IM long course world records by the end of the 2024 Olympics?


  • Yes – 47.8%
  • No – just 400 IM – 46.0%
  • No – neither – 6.2%

After what he did at the World Championships last year, and with his performances in the NCAA so far this season, there’s little question that Michael Phelps‘ world record in the 400 IM is on borrowed time and that Leon Marchand will eventually take it down.

In our most recent poll, 93.8 percent of votes indicated that Marchand will own the record by the end of the 2024 Olympics in Paris, and many are predicting he’ll take it down this summer in Fukuoka.

Marchand exploded to win the world title last year in a time of 4:04.28, putting him within half a second of Phelps’ 2008 mark of 4:03.84, and this season in the NCAA the Frenchman has shown significant progress compared to last year, highlighted by his U.S. Open Record swim of 3:31.84 in the 400-yard IM last month in a dual meet.

With the 400 IM record seemingly a forgone conclusion to many at this point, our poll last week asked readers if Marchand would take hold of both the 200 and 400 IM world records by the end of Paris 2024.

47.8 percent believe Marchand will do so, while 46 percent say he won’t get the 200 mark but he will have the 400.

At last year’s Worlds, Marchand won gold in the 200 IM in a time of 1:55.22, meaning he’ll need to knock off 1.23 seconds to surpass Ryan Lochte‘s world record of 1:54.00 from 2011.

Sixteen men have broken 1:56 in the event all-time, but only two, Lochte and Phelps, have been sub-1:55. If Marchand can venture into 1:54 territory this summer, Lochte’s world record will be within reach come Paris.

Only about six percent of readers think Marchand won’t get either world record over the next 18 months, as the vast majority are in agreement that we’ve got the best all-around swimmer since Phelps and Lochte in Marchand.

Below, vote in our new A3 Performance Pollwhich asks: Will Caeleb Dressel be an individual world champion in 2023?

Will Caeleb Dressel be an individual world champion in 2023?

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A3 Performance is an independently-owned, performance swimwear company built on a passion for swimming, athletes, and athletic performance. We encourage swimmers to swim better and faster at all ages and levels, from beginners to Olympians.  Driven by a genuine leader and devoted staff that are passionate about swimming and service, A3 Performance strives to inspire and enrich the sport of swimming with innovative and impactful products that motivate swimmers to be their very best – an A3 Performer.

The A3 Performance Poll is courtesy of A3 Performance, a SwimSwam partner.

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1 month ago

This may be an unpopular opinion, but it’s a shame college swimming doesn’t hold at least championship meets LCM. When he inevitably breaks 3:30 at NCAAs, how many people will ask “what would that convert to long course” or say “can’t wait to see what he does long course this summer”? If NCAAs is really one of the fastest meets in the world (and I agree that it is), why not swim it in a pool where they can break WRs? SCM would be a compromise (and NCAAs have occasionally been held SCM in Olympic years), but even there, the records the world cares about are LCM.

Reply to  Eric
1 month ago

Counterpoint: people debating unknowns is good for sports.

I think there’s a temptation to clear up uncertainty and streamline sport and make things black-and-white. But I think that ignores what actually drives the industry of sport.

Right now, the NCAA is the best thing swimming has going outside of the US Olympic Trials and the Olympic Games. Ticket demand for the NCAA Championships far out-paces ticket demand for the US National Championships in LCM. Maybe we should spend more time discussing what everything else can learn from the NCAA than what the NCAA can learn from everyone else.

Alison England
1 month ago

Marchand will get the 4IM, but not the 2.

1 month ago

I think it would be a good idea for SwimSwam to keep track of the percentage of polls in which the “experts” who frequent this website choose the right answer when they vote. It would provide data to either prove/disprove the notion that we know best! 🙂

1 month ago

I feel like he’ll have to be going 4:02 mid or better to go 1:53. That 1:54 just feels otherworldly

Reply to  DCSwim
1 month ago

Nope. Phelps was at 1:54,16 in 2011 and in that year far away from his 400 IM WR.

Awsi Dooger
1 month ago

Fan sites are always more overboard than the betting odds would be

Keep Swimming
1 month ago


Swimswam staff are very funny 🤣

Reply to  Keep Swimming
1 month ago

technically not swimswam lol

1 month ago

I think Marchand gets the 4 IM WR this year by a bit, I think Foster is also going to drop time a bit this year too. I think Marchand goes 1:54.5 this year but don’t think he breaks it this year. Also about Caeleb, IU Swammer summed it up well.

IU Swammer
1 month ago

If Dressel wants to be an individual world champion in 2023, I believe he’ll do it. I voted “undecided” because I think he’s undecided.

Steve Nolan
Reply to  IU Swammer
1 month ago

Agree with this. If he swims, I think he can win the 50 free. (Probably the 50 fly too, but he seems more dominant in the 50 free.)

Even last year he was gonna be iffy in the 100s, don’t think he’s winning either of those this year.

About James Sutherland

James Sutherland

James swam five years at Laurentian University in Sudbury, Ontario, specializing in the 200 free, back and IM. He finished up his collegiate swimming career in 2018, graduating with a bachelor's degree in economics. In 2019 he completed his graduate degree in sports journalism. Prior to going to Laurentian, James swam …

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