Aurélie Muller is one of the best female open water swimmers of the world, she is a world and European champion, but her most memorable race was beyond doubt the 10 km event of the 2016 Rio Olympics, when she finished second, but was disqualified after the contest. However, she wants to defend her title in the FINA World Championships in Balatonfüred.
‘Chase your dreams!’ This is Aurélie Muller’s sporting philosophy (she even has this phrase tattooed on her right foot), and the French swimmer has already fulfilled some of her dreams during her career, but she has had a nightmare as well.
The little Aurélie was taken to baby swimming by her mother, and her instructors immediately realised how talented she was, as she won almost every school competition that she entered a couple of years later. 2006 was a fabulous year for her, since she won gold at the World Junior Championships in Rio over 1500 m freestyle, and at the European Junior Championships in Palma de Mallorca over 400 m freestyle.
She entered her first major open water competition in 2008, and has become a specialist of this discipline since then. At the 2011 FINA World Championships in Shanghai she edged out U.S. swimmer Ashley Twichell to clinch a silver medal by a single tenth margin in the 5 km event. She finished first four years later in Kazan in 10 km, becoming the first French open water swimmer to win a world title. She was named the European Swimming Federation [LEN] Female Open Water Swimmer of the Year in 2015.
2016 could have also been an almost perfect year for her. She won gold at the European Open Water Championships in Hoorn over 10 km, and finished second behind Sharon van Rouwendaal at the Rio Olympics, but was disqualified for grappling and obstructing the Italian Rachele Bruni on the finish line.
Muller feels good in the water, on land and in the air as well: she likes all kinds of extreme sports and she is a big fan of gliding. She would surely feel like walking on air if she competed well on 16 July, the day of the women’s 10 km competition at the 2017 FINA World Championships in Balatonfüred…
Born: Sarreguemines (France), June 7, 1990
World champion (2015 Kazan, 10 km); world silver medallist (2011 Shanghai, 5 km)
European champion (2016 Hoorn, 10 km)
Junior world champion (2006 Rio de Janeiro, 1500 m freestyle)
Junior European champion (2006 Palma de Mallorca, 400 m freestyle)