French Anastasiia Kirpichnikova qualified for the 1500m freestyle final on Monday at the Fukuoka World Swimming Championships (Japan), with a French record at stake.

The swimmer of Russian origin, naturalized French last April, finished her series in 16 min 00 sec 40, beating at the same time the French record of Laure Manaudou (16 min 03 sec 01) which dated from 2006. It was the oldest record in French swimming. “I’m happy because at the French Championships, I didn’t beat him for a second,” responded Kirpichnikova, who also swam the open water races last week.

She sets the sixth time in the series, dominated by the American Katie Ledecky in 15 min 41 sec 22, and will play the final on Tuesday. Another French record for Laura Manaudou almost fell on Monday.

Pauline Mahieu qualified for the semi-finals of the 100m backstroke by beating her personal best in the morning heats in 59 sec 60, one tenth behind Manaudou’s mark.

“I admit that the French record, I had it in mind, it’s still not that but I’m lucky to be able to swim again this afternoon (for the semi-finals), so I can’t wait,” she said.

On the men’s side, Mewen Tomac and Yohann Ndoye-Brouard will both compete in the 100m backstroke semi-finals. Tomac qualified with the sixth fastest time, while Ndoye-Brouard took 15th and penultimate place.

At the foot of the podium at the Budapest Worlds last year, Ndoye-Brouard took risks by releasing his effort in the last meters. “I gritted my teeth (while waiting for the results, editor’s note). But it’s happening so I’m still happy.” “I was lucky not to get kicked out of the playoffs, and tonight (in the semi-finals) it will be much better,” he promised. On the other hand, Analia Pigrée, European champion in the 50m backstroke last summer, failed to qualify for the semi-finals of the 100m backstroke, as did Hadrien Salvan in the 200m freestyle, 17th in the series.