Swimming: Ledecky smashes own record to win women's 400m freestyle


09 August, 2016

Peaty's fireworks were sandwiched between two more world records - by Sweden's Sarah Sjostrom in the women's 100m butterfly and prolific American Katie Ledecky, who obliterated her own 400m freestyle mark by nearly two seconds. Ledecky won the 200-meter at the 2015 World Championships in Russian Federation with a time of 1:55.16.

Rachael Larimore of the Dallas Morning News asks, why isn't one of Ledecky's best events part of the Olympic games?

Ledecky won her first gold medal of these Games, torching the field in the final of the 400 free with a stunning time of 3 minutes, 56.46 seconds to win by almost five seconds over Britain's Jazz Carlin.

Sunday night saw America earning its first swimming gold medal at the 2016 Rio Olympics.

Katie Ledecky rewrote the record books again at the Rio Olympics and says she has no problem in ploughing a lone furrow, such is her dominance of the freelance discipline.

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Phelps took the second leg after Caeleb Dressel led off for the Americans, and it was another memorable performance at a distance that isn't Phelps' specialty. After all, Ledecky anchored against Australian Cate Campbell, owner of the individual 100m freestyle world record. "I was just trying to set a [personal] best time, and for me that just happens to be a world record". Day two proved particularly fruitful for members of USA Swimming, who added five medals to the nation's Rio Olympic medal count. Ledecky still has the 200- and 800-meter freestyle events, and the women's 4x200 free relay. In one of the interviews, she said, "We loved our first summer of swimming, and we made a decision to join a year-round swim team".

This was Sjostrom's first Olympic medal, after she finished fourth in the 100 fly at the London Games four years ago, missing out on the bronze by 23-hundredths of a second. I knew I was the big favorite. Their expected duel for the gold here in the 200 is one of the most anticipated races of the entire Olympics meet.

"He told me really kind words at the end", del Potro said, "and I appreciated that".

"I'm looking forward to the challenge", Ledecky said.

The teenage swimming sensation from the United States was named the global female Champion of Champions by French newspaper L'Équipe in 2014 after her impressive record in the 2013 World Championship where she won gold in the 400-, 800-, and 1500-meter freestyle, and in the 4×200-meter freestyle relay, and set two world records. She toyed with the seconds, slowing a little after 150 m but never giving up her blistering world-record stroke. The previous world record was 3:58.37. She was one of seven Russian swimmers barred from the Games who had either failed doping tests or were named in the World Anti-Doping Agency's investigation into state-sponsored doping.

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