Two days later, she recorded a time of 1:54.88 en route to winning the 200-meter freestyle. A combination of protein (like chicken, steak, or salmon) and a carb (like rice, vegetable, or pasta) rounds out her day. David Marsh, an assistant on the team who served as the womens coach in 2016, recalled coaches gathering when Ledecky swam. Michael Phelps, the 28-time Olympic medalist, called Ledecky the greatest female swimmer of our time.. She reset her American, NCAA, and U.S. Open records in the 800-yard freestyle relay, 500-yard freestyle, and 400-yard freestyle relay and won a meet-best five race titles overall. [64] On the meet's final day, Ledecky set an NCAA record in the 1000-yard freestyle (9:06.90) en route to a championship record in the 1650-yard freestyle (15:07.70), defeating runner-up Smith by 21.19 seconds and lapping all other competitors. 1 ranking", "SwimSwam Pulse: 52.4% Pick Ledecky As Swimmer of the 2010s", "Lewis Hamilton voted Best British Sports Star of the Decade as Djokovic, Ledecky and Kuneida also triumph", "Serena Williams aces AP athlete of the decade honors", "Katie Ledecky, after being slowed by illness, showcases her speed", "2020 PSS - Des Moines: Ledecky Scratches 800 Free on Day 4", "With eyes on Tokyo, Katie Ledecky returns to find out what a difference a year makes", "Katie Ledecky wins all four of her events, Simone Manuel takes 50-meter crown at TYR Pro Swim Series", "Meet Results: Longhorn Aquatics Elite Invite 5/20/2021 - 5/23/2021", "Katie Ledecky vs. herself: How a backyard pool and unrelenting drive has the U.S. swimmer on the brink of Olympic history", "2020 U.S. Olympic Team Trials - Wave II: Women's 400m Freestyle Heats Results Summary", "2021 U.S. Olympic Trials Wave II: Day 2 Prelims Live Recap", "Katie Ledecky's first opportunity to make Tokyo Olympic team has arrived in 400m freestyle", "2020 U.S. Olympic Team Trials - Wave II: Women's 400m Freestyle Final Results Summary", "2021 U.S. Olympic Trials Wave II: Day 2 Finals Live Recap", "Tickets Punched: Katie Ledecky and Torri Huske are Tokyo Bound", "U.S. Olympic Trials: Katie Ledecky Swims 4:01.27 to Qualify for Third Olympics; Paige Madden Pulls Away for Second", "Katie Ledecky relieved to check the box after qualifying for third Olympics", "Katie Ledecky vs Ariarne Titmus Rivalry Emerges in 400m Freestyle Before Tokyo", "Katie Ledecky makes US Olympic team with win in women's 400-meter freestyle", "2020 U.S. Olympic Team Trials - Wave II: Women's 200m Freestyle Heats Results Summary", "2020 U.S. Olympic Team Trials - Wave II: Women's 1500m Freestyle Heats Results Summary", "2021 U.S. Olympic trials Wave II: Day 3 Prelims Live Recap", "2020 U.S. Olympic Team Trials - Wave II: Women's 200m Freestyle Semifinals Results Summary", "2020 U.S. Olympic Team Trials - Wave II: Women's 200m Freestyle Final Results Summary", "2020 U.S. Olympic Team Trials - Wave II: Women's 1500m Freestyle Final Results Summary", "Katie Ledecky, after chats with legends, wins two races in one night at Olympic Swimming Trials", "2021 U.S. Olympic Trials Wave II: Day 4 Finals Live Recap", "For Katie Ledecky, the long and short of it is first place in both the 1,500 and 200 freestyle", "Katie Ledecky shows dominance, poise at U.S. Olympics swim trials", "Katie Ledecky wins 1500m free 70 minutes after 200m at US Olympic Trials", "2020 U.S. Olympic Team Trials - Wave II: Women's 800m Freestyle Heats Results Summary", "2021 U.S. Olympic Trials Wave II: Day 6 Prelims Live Recap", "2020 U.S. Olympic Team Trials - Wave II: Women's 800m Freestyle Final Results Summary", "2021 U.S. Olympic Trials Wave II: Day 7 Finals Live Recap", "Which athletes have won the most Olympic medals in Tokyo 2020? [77], In July 2018, at the US National Swimming Championships, Ledecky qualified for the 2018 Pan Pacific Championships by finishing first in the 200-,[78] 400-, and 800-meter freestyle.[79]. Three days later, Ledecky then broke the world record in the 800-meter freestyle with a time of 8:11.00,[37] bettering her previous mark of 8:13.86. Ledecky was a USA Olympic team member in 2012, 2016, and 2020, and holds the female record for most individual gold medals (14) and overall gold medals (19) at the World Aquatics Championships. They were called watch times.. TOKYO Katie Ledecky has won her first gold of the Tokyo Olympics, in the 1,500 meter freestyle race. She has won seven Olympic gold medals and 19 world championship gold medals, the most in history for a female swimmer. Thats whats allowing her to get such a good grab of the water and have such good force generation per stroke.. She has the 24 fastest swims of all time. During the 201617 NCAA season, Ledecky set 12 NCAA records and nine American records while swimming as a freshman for Stanford University. [122] Ledecky's time of 3:57.36 was the second-fastest time of her career and fourth-fastest in history. The goals were adjusted to pursue times that felt a little scary, a little unreasonable, more than a little exciting: 3:56 in the 400 freestyle and 8:05 in the 800 freestyle. Because of her analytical approach to training, she knows almost exactly how the race is going to go, Sweetser said. Instead, Ledecky has a gift that defies measurement. Following Suguiyama's departure to coach for the University of California, Berkeley, she continued to train with the Nation's Capital Swim Club under coach Bruce Gemmell through the 2016 Olympics. Thats amazing.. At the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo, Japan, Ledecky won two gold medals and two silver medals, making her the most decorated U.S. female athlete for a second straight Summer Olympics. Genetics? [17] During her high-school swimming career, Ledecky twice set the American and US Open record in the 500-yard freestyle, and she twice set the national high-school record in the 200-yard freestyle. Even if they are fit and strong like a football player, they cannot swim fast if they do not have the skill to catch the water, Takagi wrote in an email. Midway through the 25-meter journeys at the Palisades Swim and Tennis Club in Cabin John, Md., shed grab a lane line and catch her breath like so many other 6-year-olds figuring out how to swim. "She's relatively short (at 5-foot-11) and she doesn't have an excessive wingspan." Nevertheless, Ledecky's arms are long enough to wrap around what could. I dont think she had a clue how fast she was going. Oh, man, this is not exactly what we thought, he said. She won three individual gold medals at the 2013 World Championships,. "I fought tooth and nail," Ledecky said. She set a time of 15:08.24, breaking the previous world record set by German swimmer Sarah Khler by almost 10 seconds. The most impressive thing for me is blocking out the noise and not feeling the pressure., Urbanchek put it bluntly: Nothing distracts her., Theres no special sauce. No detail is too small. Swimming the anchor leg again, Ledecky provided the fastest split of the field (1:53.74) to turn a 0.89-second deficit into a 1.84-second victory, stopping the clock at 7:43.03.[56]. Coming Sunday: Home subscribers will receive the Los Angeles Times 24-page Olympic preview section, your guide to the upcoming Games. In the inaugural season of the International Swimming League, Ledecky represented DC Trident. [123] This was Ledecky's first loss in an individual event at the Olympics. Andrew Gemmell, the coachs son who competed at the London Olympics in the 1,500 freestyle, trained with Ledecky in the two years leading up to Rio. Ledecky's split was the fastest of all swimmers in the relay finals. [69], On the third day of competition, Ledecky defended her 1500-meter freestyle title, winning with a time of 15:31.82. Katie Ledecky has no obvious physiological advantages as a swimmer. They swam identical workouts. Ledecky passed Quadarella and pulled away in the final 50 meters to win by 1.41 seconds. [135] Ledecky earned FINA's female swimmer of the meet trophy for a third time. [65] In the meet's final event, Ledecky joined Manuel, Neal, and Hu to swim the second leg of Stanford's 400-yard freestyle relay. On the fourth day of competition, Ledecky tied for silver in the 200-meter freestyle (with Emma McKeon), finishing behind Federica Pellegrini with a time of 1:55.18. At just 19 years old, Katie Ledecky is the most dominant swimmer in the world. She qualified in the heats with an Olympic record, 8:12.86, and set a world record in the finals of 8:04.79, over 11 seconds faster than the silver medalist, Jazmin Carlin. The next morning, Ledecky struggled through her preliminary heat of the 1500-meter freestyle despite qualifying first for the event's final. In the evening session, Ledecky faced a tough double with the 1500-meter freestyle final and the semi-finals of the 200-meter freestyle shortly after. What happened took everyone by surprise. She takes a little advantage by doing all these little things a little bit better and I think that all adds up to her being so much better than everybody else, Barbini said. Not a drop of milk spilled. Gemmell warned other men in the training camp to be ready for Ledecky to beat them. She also holds the fastest-ever times in the women's 500-, 1000-, and 1650-yard freestyle events. Figure Skating championships. In her second event, Ledecky won gold in the 1500-meter freestyle in a world record time of 15:36.53, breaking the record held by compatriot Kate Ziegler by six seconds. READ: Katie Ledecky wins by 21 seconds in her first race for a year Having taken a year-long break from competitions amid the pandemic, Ledecky has recently returned to racing and showed few. Her gold was the first international medal of her career, earning her the 2012 Best Female Performance of the Year and Breakout Performer of the Year at the Golden Goggle Awards. The same all-out approach Ledecky brought to the final 25 meters of the 200 freestyle at the Rio de Janeiro Olympics she edged Swedens Sarah Sjostrom by .35 seconds for gold despite feeling queasy happens regularly in practice with nothing at stake other than numbers on a clock. An iron will? Ledecky began the year by breaking her own world records in the 800- and 1500-meter freestyle at the 2014 Woodlands Swim Team Senior Invitational in June. Shes just doing it better than everybody else.. In keeping with Ledeckys low-key personality, the goals stayed between them. You may occasionally receive promotional content from the Los Angeles Times. With three individual titles, Ledecky became the first swimmer to win the 200, 400 and 800 m freestyle at the same Olympics since Debbie Meyer did so in 1968 in Mexico City. ", "The graduate: What Katie Ledecky learned at Stanford and how it might make her faster", "2012 U.S. Olympic Team Trials (swimming) Women's 800-metre freestyle (final)", "2012 U.S. Olympic Team Trials (swimming) Women's 400-metre freestyle (final)", "2012 U.S. Olympic Team Trials (swimming) Women's 200 metre freestyle (semifinals)", U.S. Olympic swimming trials: Katie Ledecky breaks Janet Evans's 400 freestyle age group record, "Swimming at the 2012 London Summer Games: Women's 800 metres freestyle round one", "Swimming at the 2012 London Summer Games: Women's 800 metres freestyle final", "Katie Ledecky wins 400 freestyle at world championships", "Katie Ledecky smashes 1500m freestyle world record for a golden double", "15th FINA World Championships Women's 4x200m Freestyle", "Bethesda's Katie Ledecky sets world record in 800-meter freestyle, wins fourth gold medal of world championships", "Driving test looming for Ledecky after Barcelona splash", Janet Evans sees parallels with Katie Ledecky, Katie Ledecky Sets World Record in 1,500-Meter Freestyle, Pan Pacific Championships, Results: Katie Ledecky Trounces Pan Pacs Record in 200 Free, Katie Ledecky Smashes 400 Free World Record, Nearly Clears 3:58! [87] Ledecky withdrew from the 800-meter freestyle race due to illness. Ledecky sometimes texts her mother, Mary Gen, or brother, Michael, after a particularly good set. [129] She finished the final in 15:37.34, but her record from the prelim round still holds. Other than standing 6 feet tall, a couple of inches above the average height for female swimming finalists at the Rio Games, she could blend into a crowd outside of the pool. The stories pile up. Mary Gen Ledecky, who swam in college, encouraged her daughter to write down goals. It was two big kicks and bilateral breathing. On the final day of competition, she reset her world record in the 800-meter freestyle, clocking a time of 8:06.68. [91], As part of the NBC evening telecast for day one of the 2020 USA Swimming Olympic Trials (postponed to June 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic), Ledecky was featured in an interview discussing Stanford University's commencement, finishing her college degree, and training for the Olympic Trials. Shes not doing it for the adulation, shes not doing it for the title of the worlds greatest swimmer, the coach said. At the 2014 US National Championships, the qualifying meet for both the 2014 Pan Pacific Swimming Championships and the 2015 World Aquatics Championships, Ledecky finished first in the 200-, 400-, and 800-meter freestyle. [84] Readers of The London Evening Standard voted Ledecky the International Sportswoman of the Decade. [51] At the conclusion of the week, Ledecky was named the female swimmer of the meet. The 400? And not even appearing winded? Competing in both events is rare enough. For lengthy races like the 1,500 meters, this must remain constant for more than 15 minutes. We dont clamor for such answers while admiring a sopranos voice or an actors ability to make us weep. Is she tall for the average person? [108][109][110] Ledecky swam a 15:40.50 in the 1500 meter freestyle, lowering her Championship Record from the day before and becoming the first winner of the women's 1500 meter freestyle at the US Olympic Trials. In the 1650-yard freestyle, Ledecky re-set her NCAA record in the 1000-yard free with a split of 9:05.89 en route to winning by more than 28 seconds. Verified. Yuri Suguiyama, her first coach, watched Phelps break Australian Ian Thorpes world record in the 200 freestyle during the world championships in Melbourne. Shes swimming faster than we are, said Urbanchek, coach to 44 Olympians and an assistant on six Olympic teams. She doesnt have a central governor like most athletes do, that mind-to-muscle idea that I need to shut down right now. Theres nothing you can throw at her that she cant convince herself that she can do.. She subsequently announced her withdrawal from the 1500 and 200-meter freestyle due to illness.[81]. Ledecky, who could reach only 21 inches a few years earlier, reached a personal-best 39 inches. A swimmer needs ample strength for this approach to work. Follow. National Team Director Frank Busch described Ledecky's 1500 performance as "the most impressive race I have ever seen, and I've been in the sport for 50 years. She's blazing a completely different trail than anyone who has come before. In a video posted on social media last summer, Ledecky placed a glass of chocolate milk on her head, then swam the length of the pool. (Photo: JIM SHORIN/, Graphic: KATRINA LIOU/The Stanford Daily) By Inyoung Choi. Katie Ledecky hugs Erica Sullivan after winning the womens 1500 freestyle during the second wave of the U.S. Olympic Swim Trials on June 16 in Omaha, Neb. [25][26] Her third-place finish in the 400-meter freestyle was the fastest time ever swum by a 15- to 16-year-old American. Her body measurement is 34-24-35 inches. Her strength-to-body mass ratio is probably in the top 98%.. Thats why Bruce Gemmell quips that Ledecky would be content to race in a cardboard box. [39], In the 200-meter freestyle final, Ledecky had over a half-second lead on the field at the halfway point before winning by 1.46 seconds with a meet record time of 1:55.74. Do Not Sell or Share My Personal Information, convincing victory during the U.S. Olympic swimming trials, U.S. swimming trials bring some clarity for athletes after a year of uncertainty, Skateboard phenom Nyjah Huston, a rising Olympic star, blends in on SoCal streets, Elliott: Allyson Felixs desire to win gold on the Olympic stage continues to shine bright, Mikaela Shiffrin wins gold in giant slalom for seventh world title, Bass chief of staff says hell avoid Olympics issues for a year. Matt Barbini, USA Swimmings national team performance director, recalled the feeling after Ledeckys surprise victory in the 800 at the London Olympics in 2012 introduced the little-known teenager to the world. Katie Ledecky, byname of Kathleen Genevieve Ledecky, (born March 17, 1997, Washington, D.C., U.S.), American swimmer who was one of the sport's dominant freestylers in the early 21st century, breaking numerous records. (Charlie Neibergall / Associated Press) Michael Phelps, the 28-time. [88] Ledecky did not compete at any other events during 2020. Winning both? Just over an hour later, Ledecky took third in the 200-meter freestyle (1:55.15), finishing behind Canada's Taylor Ruck (1:54.44) and Japan's Rikako Ikee (1:54.85). At the 2020 Olympic Games, Ledecky also emerged as the most decorated U.S. female athlete and became the first American female swimmer to win an individual event in three straight Olympiads. Ledecky's six individual gold medals at the Olympics, 14 individual gold medals at the World Aquatics Championships, and 22 overall medals at the World Aquatics Championships are records in women's swimming. Ledeckys world records in the 800 freestyle and 1,500 freestyle are 1.95% faster than the second-best women. [33] Anchor Missy Franklin overtook Australian Alicia Coutts in the last 200 meters, giving the US the gold. She had a smile that seemed bigger than her diminutive frame, swim cap pulled over her ears and enthusiastic post-race analyses captured on home movies. While Michael Phelps and his fighter-jet wingspan already have passed history by with a record 22 medals . Thats key to her success. The usual gap for a world record is as thin as an Olympic medal. She wasnt great at skills or drills we would try and teach her. [48], In her only event on the fourth day of competition, the 200-meter freestyle, Ledecky won her third gold medal of the meet, winning in a time of 1:55.16. The girl couldnt make it across the pool. The next day, Ledecky anchored for Team USA in the women's 4x200 freestyle relay, winning a silver medal alongside teammates Allison Schmitt, Paige Madden, and Katie McLaughlin behind China. Ledecky leaves some of the most experienced people in swimming grasping for the secret to her dominance. (Pan Pacific Championships Results), Stanford-bound swimmer Katie Ledecky sets world record, Katie Ledecky Wins 800 in Record Time, Completing World Championships Sweep, Katie Ledecky Making Sub-4:00 Look Pedestrian With Meet Record to Defend 400 Free Title at 2015 FINA World Championships, Katie Ledecky Breaks World Record, Almost by Accident, "16th FINA World Championships Women's 1500 metre freestyle (final)", "16th FINA World Championships Women's 200 metre freestyle (semifinals)", Katie Ledecky expands world dominance with 200 freestyle title, Katie Ledecky does it again, breaks world record in 800 free, Katie Ledecky Now Owns the 10 Fastest 800 Free Times Ever, Ledecky, Phelps Named Swimmers of the Meet, "Katie Ledecky Wins Gold in 400-Meter Freestyle", "Katie Ledecky Smashes World Record in the 800-Meter Freestyle", "Katie Ledecky Defends 800m Free Title To Win 4th Gold in Rio", "Ledecky Wins 1650 By A Minute, Breaks American, NCAA Records At OSU", "Ledecky Scorches NCAA, American Records With 4:25.15 500 Free", "Katie Ledecky Beaten by Simone Manuel, Still Sets Two Personal Bests", "A Louisville Swimmer Managed To Tie Katie Ledecky in an NCAA Championship Race", "Ledecky Laps All But One Swimmer To Win NCAA Title", "Stanford Wins First NCAA Swimming and Diving Title Since 1998", "Katie Ledecky Wins 400m Freestyle Gold Medal at World Aquatics Championships", "Katie Ledecky, USA Win 4x100m Free Relay at 2017 World Aquatics Championships", "Ledecky's Dozen: Passes Missy For Most World Champs Golds In History", "Ledecky Drops 15:03, Clips American Record", "KATIE LEDECKY SMASHES 400 IM AMERICAN RECORD, TOPS NCAA RECORD IN 3:56.5",, "Katie Ledecky Signs with Wasserman Agent Dan Levy", "If you thought Katie Ledecky was done shattering world records, you were sorely mistaken", "Katie Ledecky signs with TYR, her first endorsement deal since turning pro", "Men Don't Move, but Ledecky Takes Women's Lead in PSS Standings", "Ledecky cruises to easy win in 800 free at US Nationals", "Katie Ledecky wins 400m free at Pan Pacs, but she has company", "Ledecky withdraws from 2 events at worlds due to illness", "Natalie Coughlin to Return to Competition with the DC Trident", "Katie Ledecky wins by 30 seconds, takes back No. Theres a lot of noise, said Janet Evans, the four-time Olympic gold medalist who is considered one of the greatest distance swimmers in history and now works as the chief athlete officer for the Los Angeles 2028 Olympic Committee. She is widely regarded as one of the greatest Olympians and the greatest female swimmer of all time.[5][6]. This is really impressive. It worked. [23], At the 2012 United States Olympic Trials in Omaha, Nebraska (her first senior national competition), Ledecky made the Olympic team by placing first in the 800-meter freestyle with a time of 8:19.78, which was over two seconds ahead of second-place finisher Kate Ziegler. Or perhaps the answer is more basic. [71], Following another undefeated dual meet season, Ledecky earned Swimmer of the Meet honors for the second straight year at the Pac-12 Championships in Federal Way, sweeping the 500-yard freestyle, 400-yard individual medley, and 200-yard freestyle. Ledecky swam the second half of the race faster than the first, completing the final 800 meters in 8:14.11faster than any other woman has completed a regular 800-meter race in a textile suit. Ledecky is the world record holder in the women's 800- and 1500-meter freestyle (both long course and short course) as well as the former world record holder in the women's 400-meter freestyle (long course). General swimmers tend to think that if they can just get their arms around faster and kick their legs faster, they can swim faster. Its just her commitment and desire for getting better.. With the victory, Ledecky became the first swimmer, male or female, to win five consecutive world championship titles in an individual event. OMAHA As she prepared for her first Olympics nine years ago, a 15-year-old Katie Ledecky carried hopes and dreams into the London Games. Its a remarkable combination, particularly for someone to be that dominant for so long, which takes so much commitment, while at the same time being so nice and polite and kind.. She was swimming like most classic female distance swimmers, Suguiyama later told the American Swimming Coaches Assn. More recently, in the 1,500 at the Olympic trials, again, except . Since NCAA rules keep mens and womens swim teams that dont use the same coach from practicing together, Ledecky used lane 12 and Sweetser lane 11. Ledecky returned to competition three days later to swim the final of the women's 4x200-meter freestyle relay. At the 2016 United States Olympic Trials in Omaha, Nebraska, Ledecky won the 200-, 400- and 800-meter freestyles to qualify for her second Olympic team. Her physiology? Shes just doing it better than everybody else., Bruce Gemmell, Katie Ledeckys coach at the Nations Capital Swim Club, Some of this immunity to pressure comes from her knack to set goals, internalize them, then turn them into reality. Her wins came in the 200-, 400-, 800-, and 1500-meter freestyles and the 4200-meter freestyle. [66], Following the season, Ledecky became the first freshman in 35 years to receive the Honda Cup, which recognizes the nation's top female collegiate athlete.[67]. They realized the goals, lofty as they might seem for a teenager, were too pedestrian. [111] Ledecky won the 200 meter and 1500 meter freestyle finals in a time span of about 70 minutes as well as collecting her medal at the 200 meter freestyle medal ceremony and eating a snack. Shes always trying to maximize her performance so theres nothing left in the tank. About an hour later, she returned to the pool for the 1,500 freestyle final. Katie Ledecky has a height of 6'0" (1.83 m). Is it her training? She set the record in the event nine months later in 8:13.36. And Katie's got tiny feet, too. [76], Ledecky signed her first sponsorship deal with TYR Sport, Inc. on June 8, 2018. Is she tall for an elite swimmer? Ledecky was the defending Olympic champion and world-record holder. However, elite swimmers focus on how to generate propulsion more efficiently.. Ledecky won easily in 4 minutes 1.27 seconds, the 43rd-fastest swim ever by a woman. Katie Ledecky's height is 6 feet tall and her body weight is 73 kilograms. Four years later, she was a record holder and medal. Most of the time she didnt. But the more coaches and trainers and competitors grasp for answers, the more the reality comes into focus. [72], At the NCAA Championships, Ledecky won the 500 and 1650-yard freestyle events by record margins and anchored the winning 800-yard freestyle relay team of Katie Drabot, Brooke Forde, and Ella Eastin.

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