13-Year-Old Luka Mijatovic Breaks 13-14 NAG Record with 4:24.72 500 Free at Sectionals

by Riley Overend 24

December 19th, 2022 Club, National, News, Records

2022 CA/NV Speedo Sectionals

  • Dec. 16-19
  • La Mirada Splash! Regional Aquatics Complex
    • La Mirada, Calif.
  • SCY (25 yards)
  • Results on MeetMobile: “2022 December CA NV Speedo Sect @RMDA v1”

Luka Mijatovic’s otherworldly ascent up the national age group (NAG) rankings hit a new peak this past weekend at the 2022 CA/NV Speedo Sectionals in La Mirada, California. 

The 13-year-old Pleasanton Seahawks standout snuck under the boys’ 13-14 NAG record in the 500 free with his 4:24.72 on Sunday, lowering the previous mark set by fellow Seahawks swimmer Lleyton Plattel in 2017. 

Boys’ 13-14 NAG Rankings, 500-Yard Free

  1. Luka Mijatovic – 4:24.72 (2022)
  2. Lleyton Plattel – 4:24.79 (2017)
  3. Sean Green – 4:24.98 (2022)
  4. Cooper Lucas – 4:26.50 (2019)
  5. Alex Katz – 4:26.73 (2011)
  6. Michael Phelps – 4:26.79 (2000)
  7. Samuel Marsteiner – 4:27.18 (2022)
  8. Trey Freeman – 4:27.52 (2015)
  9. Aidan Burns – 4:27.55 (2012)
  10. Brad Gonzalez – 4:27.72 (2013)

Heading into Sectionals, Mijatovic’s personal-best time was 4:28.67 from earlier this month. He shaved a second off that mark in prelims (4:27.49) before dropping two more seconds in the final en route to a second-place finish. 

Mijatovic was already the fastest 13-year-old American ever in the event after clocking a 4:29.84 last month. Now he’s the fastest 13-year-old American in history by more than five seconds. 

His improvement over the past year has been remarkable. When 2022 began, Mijatovic’s lifetime best stood at 4:50.25 from last December. He’s now dropped more than 25 seconds in a year. 

Mijatovic showed off his versatility by jumping into the top-20 NAG rankings in the 400 IM with a 3:56.84, earning another runner-up finish in the final. That appears to be the fastest time ever by a 13-year-old, edging Joshua Zuchowski’s 3:56.86 from 2018. Among 13- and 14-year-old boys, he moved up to become the 19th-fastest performer in history, right in between Michael Phelps (3:56.80) and Luca Urlando (3:56.86).

All-Time Rankings, 13-Year-Old Boys’ 400 IM

  1. Luka Mijatovic (Pleasanton Seahawks), 3:56.84 – 2022
  2. Joshua Zuchowski (Flood Aquatics Swim Team), 3:56.86 – 2018
  3. Thomas Heilman (Cavalier Aquatics), 3:58.73 – 2020
  4. Richard Poplawski (Scarlet Aquatics), 4:00.09 – 2019
  5. Curtis Ogren (Palo Alto Stanford Aquatics), 4:01.29 – 2009

Mijatovic also dipped under 1:40 for the first time in the 200 free. He went 1:39.78, which ranks 27th in his NAG.

Mijatovic is already the second-fastest 13-year-old 200 IMer in the record books (1:52.33) behind Michael Andrew (1:50.50). He’ll have a chance to overtake Andrew’s mark on Monday with the 200 IM on his schedule along with the 1000 free.

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9 months ago

As far as i’m aware Owen Ekk at the speedo holiday classic went a 151 in the 200im for 13-14

9 months ago

MIjatovic last name is typically from Republic of Montenegro originally. Montenegro is a waterpolo power, but you put us between lines and say now go race, and we choke. It has to be a ball between us and opponents or that sport is a non-starter. Luka is very impressive.

9 months ago

How tall is he?

Reply to  JimSwim22
9 months ago

A bit over 6 feet

9 months ago

Man this kid is really something. He caught my eye when he went 4:29 a bit ago and now to break this nag at 13 is unbelievable. Congrats to him.

Last edited 9 months ago by PFA
VA Steve
9 months ago

What?! It just continues. Wow.

9 months ago

Is there anywhere that has historic US nag records… Like from the 70s, 80s, 90s?

Reply to  Supafly23
9 months ago

not exactly what you’re looking for, but you can select American record progression and see records over time. Record Progressions (usaswimming.org)

9 months ago

Amazing achievements. So often when we see kids who have matured early they excel in the sprints. I hope it bodes well for his future achievements that he is a great middle distance talent!

9 months ago

kid just cranked out a 9:07 in the 1000.

Reply to  FlyBkBrFr
9 months ago

If he wants to be a hero he should target Jesse Vassalo’s 13-14 LCM 1500 record from 1976.

Reply to  Briand
9 months ago

This kid is my contender to break this decades old record now hope he takes a shot at because he is likely the best prospect to go after in since Plattel got within 4 seconds of it 5 years ago.

About Riley Overend

Riley is an associate editor interested in the stories taking place outside of the pool just as much as the drama between the lane lines. A 2019 graduate of Boston College, he arrived at SwimSwam in April of 2022 after three years as a sports reporter and sports editor at newspapers …

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