Though Dagny Knutson’s career may have been cut short before she had any big international successes, and though there was some polyurethane in play, it is a referendum on how good Knutson was that a pair of Olympic gold medalists couldn’t take down her National High School Records in early action on Saturday. Katie Ledecky swam the 200 free and was about two-tenths off, and then in Colorado, Missy Franklin swam a 1:56.85 in the 200 IM to miss Knutson’s overall record by a solid three seconds.
Franklin’s swim did, however, take down the 200 IM Independent High School Record held by her good friend and fellow Olympian Kathleen Hersey. Hersey, who swam for Marist High School in Georgia, was a 1:57.41 in 2008. Knutson still stands as queen-of-the-mountain with a 1:53.82 from 2009 (albeit in prelims).
The comparative splits of the two swims are below. Not a big surprise, as Franklin fell behind the record pace of the butterflier Hersey early in the race, but made up a ton of ground on the backstroke. Hersey, more of a true IM’er than Franklin who swam this race more for its impact on the team standings, was better on breaststroke, but Franklin brought the race home hard in a closing split of 27.64. Also keep in mind that Franklin’s swim was done in altitude, which makes a small but noticeable difference on time over 200 yards.
Franklin, who was not shaved or tapered for this meet, missed out on a record in her next swim, the 500 free, where she was a 4:41.72. She swam anchors on the two free relays as well, so no chances at flat-start records there.
Hersey ’08 – 25.11 – 29.25 – 34.86 – 28.19 - 1:57.41
Franklin ’13 – 25.59 – 27.89 – 35.73 – 27.64 – 1:56.85