2018 Swammy Awards: U.S. Female Swimmer of the Year Katie Ledecky

To see all of our 2018 Swammy Awards presented by TYR, click here. 


Katie Ledecky remains unbeaten in the distance freestyle races at major international competitions and continued to break records in 2018. Ledecky, who went pro following the NCAA season, broke the World Record in the women’s 1500 free this year, posting a 15:20.48 at the Indianapolis Pro Swim. That was one of many victories for Ledecky as she was crowned the female champion of the 2018 TYR Pro Swim Series.

At the 2018 Pan Pacific Championships, Ledecky broke her own Pan Pacs Meet Record with an 8:09.13 in the 800 free. She defended her titles in the 800 free, 400 free, and 1500 free. In addition to her individual hardware, she also earned a bronze medal in the 200 free, which came shortly after her 800 free, and a silver medal as the anchor of the USA’s 800 free relay.

During the NCAA season, Ledecky set an American Record in the 400 IM at the Pac-12 Championships (though that record was later broken by Ella Eastin). She went on to repeat as NCAA champion in the 500 free and 1650 free.


In no particular order

  • Lilly King– Olympic champion King swam to a Pan Pacs title in the 100 breast and earned silver in the 200 breast. SHe also helped the USA’s 400 medley relay to a silver. King cemented a threepeat in both breaststroke races at the 2018 NCAA Championships, breaking her own American Records in both as well.
  • Kathleen Baker– 2018 saw newly-minted pro Baker set a World Record in the 100 back with her 58.00 at U.S. Nationals. She also took down the U.S. Open Record in the 200 IM in Irvine. Following that meet, Baker took gold in the 200 back and bronze in the 100 back at Pan Pacs individually and earned 2 relay medals (mixed 400 medley bronze, women’s 400 medley silver). During the NCAA season, Baker won the 200 back with a new American Record.

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tea rex

Olivia Smoliga and Kelsi Worrell – not as impressive as it sounds, but 8 scm world medals plus American Records have to be worth an Honorable Mention. They carried the team this December. Every bit as impressive as King, in my opinion.


Short Course Worlds is a training meet. Only LCM counts


It was not only a training meet as u put it – but a serious stepstone for many of them leading to next year WC & Tokyo . Otherwise , they would have not performed the way they did .

Jambo Sana

Those Chinese girls are coming hard for Ledecky in 2020. Females distance swimmers have traditionally peaked pretty early so Ledecky will have some head winds.


Plus Titmus…..


Yes, Titmus will be Ledecky’s biggest challenger. The Chinese aren’t as consistent in big competitions im sure Titmus will give ledecky a run for her money in the 400


Wang jianjiahe is very consistent.

Li bingjie is not consistent.

Some people saying the Chinese girls will challenge Katie ledecky?
There,s only one Chinese girl, not girls, and that,s Wang jianjiahe


Habari gani


Katie always takes her races out fast, her competition is left eating her bubbles.

A. Titmus looks like a possible contender, as she swam at Katie’s pace for the 2nd half of the 400 free race at Pan Pacs. Titmus closed the gap a little on the last lap.

About Lauren Neidigh

Lauren Neidigh

Lauren Neidigh is a former NCAA swimmer at the University of Arizona and the University of Florida. While her college swimming career left a bit to be desired, her Snapchat chin selfies and hot takes on Twitter do not disappoint. She is now coaching for Loggerhead Aquatics in her hometown …

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