Bernard sets new 100m freestyle world record, breaks 47sec

PARIS: France''s Olympic champion Alain Bernard set a new 100m freestyle record on Thursday with a time of 46.94sec, becoming the first man to smash the symbolic 47-second barrier.

His new record, set here at the French national championships, beat the previous best of 47.05sec set by Australia''s Eamon Sullivan during the Beijing Olympics.

The Frenchman had been the second man to break the 48-second barrier in Eindhoven back in 2008 at the European championships, just behind Dutchman Pieter van den Hoogenband, where he also broke the world record twice.

Thursday''s performance was Bernard''s fourth world record of his career.