2022 World Swimming Championships – “It’s a medal that tastes like gold”: Marie Wattel, divine surprise

Marie Wattel lives in Budapest again. Silver medalist in the 100-meter butterfly, 25-year-old Lille won her second major title on Sunday in her favorite event, her first individual world medal, in the catchment area of ​​the Hungarian capital. Far from feeling confident landing in Hungary, after the last months of complicated confidence and a preparation that only started in January, the Frenchwoman has sublimated herself.

I didn’t believe it at allshe noted, relieved by this mental boost.”I really took advantage of my stage, of my moment. Hoping that one day I will have the Marseillaise. It’s a medal that tastes like gold, so I’m super happyshe added: France Televisions

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A return to France that did good

Wattel’s reconfiguration was complex. Very disappointed to have missed the Tokyo Olympics, where she finished in a frustrating 6th place, in the fastest final in “100 porridge” history, the Northerner made a “reset” in her daily return from Japan.

Based in the UK since 2016, where she obtained a degree in sports management from Loughborough University, the 25-year-old swimmer decided to return home to prepare for the 2024 Olympics. Towards Marseille and the Cercle des Nageurs, for a collaboration with trainer Julien Jacquier.

In the south of France she has found a living environment that suits her better. It remained to get the “Wattel” machine working again, both physically and mentally.

Tokyo, the click

Tokyo was precisely a pivotal moment, both for better and for worse. Frustrated at not repeating her 56″16 cannon from the semifinals, her former benchmark, Wattel experienced her 6th place and her time in 56″27 as a disappointment.

In her ability to repeat her half performance, she had started like a bullet before getting stuck on the return. On Sunday, she did the exact opposite: a first 50 meters under control, in a line 5 she doesn’t really like, and a return to rocket mode.

When I saw my half (closed with second best time, editor’s note), I told myself I didn’t have much space. So I tried not to get carried away,” she said. “In the end, the last 15-20 meters, I put everything in it. I put all my anger from the past few years into it and it paid off!

In tears after the finish, tears of “relief“Admittedly to the interested party, Wattel seemed relieved by this surprising performance. She immediately admitted it, she was aiming more at the European Championship that is scheduled in Rome in August.”I’m really looking forward to the future and have every confidence in it“, she launched. On Sunday she took the world silver, but also broke her personal best, and logically the French record she already had (56″14).

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The example of a trader

Wattel did not hide that Léon Marchand’s demonstration in the 400m individual medley on Saturday had inspired her, as did the French team, now with two charms on the clock and a 3rd place in the medal standings after two days of competition.

It gave us a lot of energyshe said of Marchand’s title.He inspires us enormously. He shocked us all! He was amazing and he inspires us to break all barriers, mental barriers, records

Mental fatigue exactly. In the pools since 2013, Wattel will soon be celebrating her decade as a professional swimmer. Far from being a comet, like many in this sport, it has always been seen more in diesel. But the diesel needed some adjustments to get going for good. †I made my first in the French team, I was 16 years old. I make my first medal (world) at age 25 in individual“, she breathed between sobs, recalling the moments of doubt and especially the failures before this release.

Some start, they are Olympic champion, others have to go through many stages, to know themselves, to know the international level“, for his part, his trainer Julien Jacquier analyzed.”To have been scared, to have been confident, you must have known everything to race like she did tonight. It’s his way.“The sequel could be even better.

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