2022 World Championships: Day 3 Finals Live Recap

2022 FINA WORLD AQUATICS CHAMPIONSHIPS

Medals will be on the line in five events during Day 3 finals at the 2022 World Championships in Budapest, with swimmers in the men’s 200 free, women’s 1500 free, women’s 100 back and women’s 100 breast vying for a spot on the podium.

DAY 3 LINKS

Perhaps the greatest amount of intrigue for the session comes in the men’s 200 free, where 17-year-old David Popovici has separated himself from the pack after dropping a new World Junior Record of 1:44.40 in the semi-finals.

Popovici, who many have deemed the next superstar in men’s freestyle swimming, has a chance to win his first major international long course medal, and could also become just the second Romanian male to win a medal at the World Championships. The only other medal came in the 400 free at the 2003 Worlds in Barcelona, where Dragos Coman won bronze.

But Popovici will face a tough field that includes reigning Olympic champion Tom Dean and fellow teenage standout Hwang Sunwoo of Korea.

In the women’s 1500 free, Katie Ledecky is in a position to reclaim the crown she won three straight times from 2013 to 2017, having been forced to pull out of event at the 2019 World Championships due to illness. She has never lost an international final in this race.

The women’s 100 back, expected to be one of, if not the race of the meet now has a clear favorite in American Regan Smith, who was only two-tenths off the world record in the semi-finals. Two-time defending world champion Kylie Masse was nearly a full second back, while Olympic gold medalist and world record holder Kaylee McKeown scratched the event to focus on the 200 IM.

The men’s 100 back saw Greek veteran Apostolos Christou stun the field with a semi-final swim of 52.09, annihilating his previous best time of 52.77. Italian Thomas Ceccon (52.12) is right on his tail, while pre-race favorites Hunter Armstrong (52.37) and Ryan Murphy (52.80) from the United States have their work cut out for them.

The women’s 100 breaststroke? Lilly King, the two-time defending world champion, surprisingly finds herself out in Lane 8 for tonight’s final, and she was less than a tenth away from missing the top eight altogether after clocking 1:06.40 on Sunday. A trio of swimmers hit 1:05s in the semis, led by Germany’s Anna Elendt (1:05.62), who has now been sub-1:06 four times in the last three months.

Supplementing those finals will be a trio of semi-final rounds in the men’s 50 breast, women’s 200 breast and men’s 200 fly.

The women’s 200 free is notably missing pre-race favorite and Olympic silver medalist Siobhan Haughey, who has pulled out of the meet due to injury.

SWIMSWAM WATCH PARTY

MEN’S 200 FREESTYLE – FINAL

  • World Record: 1:42.00, Paul Biedermann (GER) – 2009 World Championships
  • Championship Record: 1:42.00, Paul Biedermann (GER) – 2009
  • 2021 Olympic Champion: Tom Dean (GBR), 1:44.22
  • 2019 World Champion: Sun Yang (CHN), 1:44.93
  1. David Popovici (ROU), 1:43.21 WJR
  2. Hwang Sunwoo (KOR), 1:44.47
  3. Tom Dean (GBR), 1:44.98
  4. Drew Kibler (USA), 1:45.01
  5. Felix Auboeck (AUT), 1:45.11
  6. Kieran Smith (USA), 1:45.16
  7. Lukas Märtens (GER), 1:45.73
  8. Elijah Winnington (AUS), 1:45.82

Romanian David Popovici delivered an unbelievable performance to win gold in the men’s 200 freestyle, clocking another World Junior Record while becoming the youngest-ever swimmer under 1:44 in history.

Popovici, 17, touched in a time of 1:43.21, smashing his WJR of 1:44.40 set during the semi-finals and launching into fourth on the all-time performers’ list while producing the second-fastest textile swim in history.

The only textile swim quicker than Popovici’s performance tonight is the 1:43.14 produced by Yannick Agnel at the 2012 Olympic Games. Popovici also puts up the fifth-fastest swim ever, period.

All-Time Performances, Men’s 200 Freestyle (LCM)

  1. Paul Biedermann (GER), 1:42.00 – 2009 World Championships
  2. Paul Biedermann (GER), 1:42.81 – 2009 World Championships
  3. Michael Phelps (USA), 1:42.96 – 2008 Olympic Games
  4. Yannick Agnel (FRA), 1:43.14 – 2012 Olympic Games
  5. David Popovici (ROU), 1:43.21 – 2022 World Championships
  6. Michael Phelps (USA), 1:43.22 – 2009 World Championships
  7. Michael Phelps (USA), 1:43.31 – 2008 Olympic Games
  8. Paul Biedermann (GER), 1:43.65 – 2009 World Championships
  9. Michael Phelps (USA), 1:43.86 – 2007 World Championships
  10. Danila Izotov (RUS), 1:43.90 – 2009 World Championships

In the race, it was reigning Olympic champion Tom Dean getting out to an aggressive start, leading the field with a 49.81 opening 100.

Popovici, not far behind in 49.96, then made his move on the third 50, out-splitting Dean by nearly eight-tenths in 26.31 to open up a massive lead before closing in 26.94 and winning comfortably by well over a second.

Popovici is also the first Romanian male to win a swimming World Championship title and the second ever to win a medal.

Fellow teenage phenom Hwang Sunwoo executed an optimal race strategy after going out too hard in last summer’s Olympic final, snagging silver in a Korean Record of 1:44.47 to overtake Dean. Hwang sat fourth at the 100 in 50.72 and then had the second-fastest third 50 (26.61) and third-fastest final 50 (27.14).

Dean fell off on the last 50, recording the slowest split in 28.07, but held on for the bronze in 1:44.98, fending off a charge from American Drew Kibler (1:45.01) and Austrian Felix Auboeck (1:45.11), who both set personal best times.

After looking a bit off and only sneaking into the final in eighth, American Kieran Smith had a much stronger showing, getting out to a fast start (50.35) before putting up a strong time of 1:45.16 to finish sixth.

WOMEN’S 1500 FREE – FINAL

  1. Katie Ledecky (USA), 15:30.15
  2. Katie Grimes (USA), 15:44.89
  3. Lani Pallister (AUS), 15:48.96
  4. Moesha Johnson (AUS), 15:55.75
  5. Simona Quadarella (ITA), 16:03.84
  6. Beatriz Pimentel Dizotti (BRA), 16:05.25
  7. Viviane Jungblut (BRA), 16:13.89
  8. Kristel Kobrich (CHI), 16:20.24

It was never in doubt. Katie Ledecky is once again the world champion in the women’s 1500 freestyle, roaring to a dominant victory in a time of 15:30.15.

Ledecky wins the event for a fourth time, having won three straight from 2013 until 2017 before being forced to withdraw from the race due to illness in 2019. It’s also her 17th World Championship gold medal, the most ever by a female swimmer.

The time stands up as Ledecky’s sixth-fastest ever (and thus the sixth-fastest all-time), and the quickest she’s been since March of 2020.

In the battle for silver, American Katie Grimes was locked in a fight with Australian Lani Pallister, with Pallister holding a one-second lead at the 1000 before Grimes pulled even with 400 to go. Grimes then broke away, holding 31s down the stretch to place second in 15:44.89, downing her previous best time of 15:51.36 by a wide margin and moving into ninth on the all-time performers list.

Pallister also set a new PB to win bronze in 15:48.96, moving into 13th all-time.

It was a 3-4 finish for Australia as Moesha Johnson set her second best time in as many days, clocking 15:55.75 after swimming on her own for virtually the entire race.

MEN’S 50 BREASTSTROKE – SEMI-FINALS

  • World Record: 25.95, Adam Peaty (GBR) – 2017 World Championships
  • Championships Record: 25.95, Adam Peaty (GBR) – 2017
  • 2019 World Champion: Adam Peaty (GBR), 26.06

Top 8 Qualifiers:

  1. Nicolo Martinenghi (ITA), 26.56
  2. Michael Andrew (USA), 26.73
  3. Nic Fink (USA), 26.74
  4. Lucas Matzerath (GER), 26.99
  5. Simone Cerasuolo (ITA), 27.01
  6. Yan Zibei (CHN), 27.07
  7. Bernhard Reitshammer (AUT), 27.11
  8. Felipe Franca Silva (BRA), 27.20

Fresh off winning his first World Championship title last night in the men’s 100 breaststroke, Nicolo Martinenghi has set himself up to take a run at a second tomorrow after qualifying first out of the semi-finals in a time 26.56.

The 22-year-old set a best time and Italian Record earlier this year in 26.39, which ranks him third all-time in the event.

Italy has never won this event at Worlds, with just one silver going to Fabio Scozzoli back in 2011.

The American duo of Michael Andrew (26.73) and Nic Fink (26.74) went 1-2 in the first semi to qualify second and third for the final. Both swimmers set lifetime bests in the 26.5 range at the U.S. Trials in late April.

Placing second to Martinenghi in the second semi was Brazilian Joao Gomes Junior, who ended up being disqualified and knocked out of the final. We also saw eight DQs in the event this morning.

The Gomes DQ results in his teammate, Felipe Franca Silva, getting bumped up into the final.

Germany’s Lucas Matzerath was the fourth swimmer to crack 27 seconds, doing so for the first time in 26.99 to qualify fourth overall.

WOMEN’S 100 BACKSTROKE – FINAL

  1. Regan Smith (USA), 58.22
  2. Kylie Masse (CAN), 58.40
  3. Claire Curzan (USA), 58.67
  4. Wan Letian (CHN), 59.77
  5. Emma Terebo (FRA), 59.98
  6. Kira Toussaint (NED), 59.99
  7. Peng Xuwei (CHN) / Medi Harris (GBR), 1:00.01

Regan Smith and Kylie Masse went toe-to-toe in the final of the women’s 100 backstroke, but it was Smith who ultimately got her hand on the wall first to win her first world championship title in the event.

The two swimmers led the field at the 50 in 28-low, with Smith holding a slight lead, and then the American began to extend her lead over the second lap. Masse, the two-time defending champion, made a big push over the final few meters, but it wasn’t quite enough as Smith claimed gold in 58.22, with Masse not far back in 58.40.

It’s the first win for the U.S. since Missy Franklin in 2013.

The times were well off their career-bests, and Smith was significantly faster (57.65) in last night’s semis.

It was actually the other American, Claire Curzan, who had the fastest back-half split in the field at 30.07, moving up alongside the two favorites towards the end to earn bronze in 58.67. The 17-year-old set a best time of 58.39 earlier this year.

There was a massive gap to the rest of the field from there, with China’s Wan Letian claiming fourth in 59.77. Wan owns a PB of 59.63, set last September.

MEN’S 100 BACKSTROKE – FINAL

  1. Thomas Ceccon (ITA), 51.60 WR
  2. Ryan Murphy (USA), 51.97
  3. Hunter Armstrong (USA), 51.98
  4. Yohann Ndoye Brouard (FRA), 52.50
  5. Apostolos Christou (GRE), 52.57
  6. Ksawery Masiuk (POL), 52.75
  7. Ryosuke Irie (JPN), 52.83
  8. Robert Glinta (ROU), 53.63

With a mustache no less, Italian Thomas Ceccon absolutely annihilated the world record in the men’s 100 backstroke, winning the world title in a scintillating time of 51.60.

Ceccon, 21, shatters the previous world record by a quarter of a second, taking down Ryan Murphy‘s mark of 51.85 set at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio.

Ceccon’s previous best time in the event was 52.23, set on the lead-off leg of Italy’s mixed medley relay at the Tokyo Olympic Games. He placed fourth in the individual final in 52.30.

Murphy, who has yet to win an individual LC world title, got out to a blistering start, flipping in 25.02 at the 50 to take the early lead.

Ceccon was second in 25.14, and came back in a scorching 26.46 to book the win.

Murphy neared his former WR to crack 52 seconds in 51.97 for the silver, his best finish ever in the event after winning bronze in 2017.

His American teammate Hunter Armstrong nearly matched Ceccon’s closing ability, splitting 26.54 on the way home to win bronze in 51.98, becoming the sixth man in history under 52 seconds.

In fact, there were only seven sub-52 swims in history coming into this session, including one of them coming on a mixed medley relay (and therefore not officially recognized everywhere). And then in this heat alone, there were three more, bringing the total to 10.

All-Time Performances, Men’s 100 Backstroke (LCM)

  1. Thomas Ceccon (ITA), 51.60 – 2022 World Championships
  2. Ryan Murphy (USA), 51.85 – 2016 Olympic Games
  3. Xu Jiayu (CHN), 51.86 – 2017 Chinese Nationals
  4. Aaron Peirsol (USA) / Ryan Murphy, 51.94 – 2009 U.S. Nationals / 2018 Pan Pacs
  5. Ryan Murphy (USA) / Evgeny Rylov (RUS) / Ryan Murphy (USA), 51.97 – 2016 Olympics / 2019 World Championships / 2022 World Championships
  6. Evgeny Rylov (RUS) / Hunter Armstrong (USA), 51.98 – 2021 Olympic Games / 2022 World Championships

Greek veteran Apostolos Christou, who produced a stunning 52.09 in the semi-finals to knock nearly seven-tenths off his best time, ended up fifth in 52.57, overtaken by France’s Yohann Ndoye Brouard (52.50) down the stretch.

WOMEN’S 200 FREESTYLE – SEMI-FINALS

  • World Record: 1:52.98, Federica Pellegrini – 2009 World Championships
  • Championships Record: 1:52.98, Federica Pellegrini – 2009
  • 2021 Olympic Champion: Ariarne Titmus (AUS), 1:53.50
  • 2019 World Champion: Federica Pellegrini (ITA), 1:54.22

Top 8 Qualifiers:

  1. Freya Anderson (GBR), 1:56.05
  2. Madi Wilson (AUS), 1:56.31
  3. Mollie O’Callaghan (CHN), 1:56.34
  4. Charlotte Bonnet (FRA), 1:56.54
  5. Yang Junxuan (CHN), 1:56.75
  6. Taylor Ruck (CAN), 1:56.80
  7. Isabel Gose (GER), 1:56.82
  8. Tang Muhan (CHN), 1:56.87

It was a tight set of semi-finals in the women’s 200 freestyle, with the top 10 swimmers all finishing within nine-tenths of one another.

Coming out on top was Great Britain’s Freya Anderson, who moved through the field over the back-half of the first semi to touch first in 1:56.05, ousting her previous best time by .01.

Australia’s Madi Wilson matched Anderson’s final 50 split of 29.15 to touch second in the heat in 1:56.31, qualifying second overall for the final, while France’s Charlotte Bonnet and Canada’s Taylor Ruck, who led the heat through the 150, advanced fourth and sixth.

18-year-old Aussie Mollie O’Callaghan took control of the second semi on the last 50, pulling away to victory in a time of 1:56.34 to advance third overall. O’Callaghan set a PB of 1:54.94 at the Australian Trials in May.

China’s Yang Junxuan, the top qualifier from the heats, took second in 1:56.75 to make the final in fifth, while Americans Leah Smith (1:56.90) and Claire Weinstein (1:56.94) finished ninth and 10th overall and are locked out of the final.

None of the Tokyo Olympic medalists will compete in the championship final as, after Ariarne Titmus opted not to attend and Siobhan Haughey pulled out due to injury, Canadian Penny Oleksiak had a blatant false start in the first semi-final. Oleksiak seemingly knew she was going to be disqualified, appearing to give up towards the end of the race and touch eighth in the heat.

Qualifying eighth at 1:56.87, China’s Tang Muhan will be the swimmer with the fastest best time in the final, having been 1:54.26 at the Chinese National Games in September 2021.

MEN’S 200 BUTTERFLY – SEMI-FINALS

Top 8 Qualifiers:

  1. Kristof Milak (HUN), 1:52.39
  2. Tomoru Honda (JPN), 1:54.01
  3. Noe Ponti (SUI), 1:54.20
  4. Leon Marchand (FRA), 1:54.32
  5. Luca Urlando (USA), 1:54.50
  6. Tamas Kenderesi (HUN), 1:54.79
  7. Alberto Razzetti (ITA), 1:54.87
  8. James Guy (GBR), 1:54.91

Defending champion Kristof Milak delivered the easiest-looking 1:52 200 fly anyone’s ever seen, cruising through the second semi to qualify first into the final in a time of 1:52.39.

Milak, the world record holder at 1:50.73, produces the 10th-fastest swim in history, and now owns seven of the top 11 times ever recorded.

Japan’s Tomoru Honda, the Olympic silver medalist behind Milak last summer, came back on American Luca Urlando to snag second in the heat in 1:54.01, advancing into the final second overall.

Urlando had a strong opening 150 but held on to clock 1:54.50 and qualify for the final in fifth, though he had the slowest last 50 of the top eight in 31.21.

Switzerland’s Noe Ponti re-broke his National Record from the prelims in 1:54.20 to win the first semi and qualify third, while Leon Marchand broke the 20-year-old French National Record in 1:54.32 to advance in fourth.

It required a sub-1:55 swim to make the final, with Great Britain’s James Guy sneaking into the final spot in 1:54.91.

Overall, this event was quicker than Tokyo and significantly faster than Gwangju. Last year, it took 1:55.31 to make the final, and in 2019, 1:56.25 tied for eighth and required a swim-off.

WOMEN’S 100 BREASTSTROKE – FINAL

  • World Record: 1:04.13, Lilly King (USA) – 2017 World Championships
  • Championship Record: 1:04.13, Lilly King (USA) – 2017
  • 2021 Olympic Champion: Lydia Jacoby (USA), 1:04.95
  • 2019 World Champion: Lilly King (USA), 1:04.93
  1. Benedetta Pilato (ITA), 1:05.93
  2. Anna Elendt (GER), 1:05.98
  3. Ruta Meilutyte (LTU), 1:06.02
  4. Lilly King (USA), 1:06.07
  5. Reona Aoki (JPN), 1:06.38
  6. Sophie Hansson (SWE), 1:06.39
  7. Tang Qianting (CHN), 1:06.41
  8. Molly Renshaw (GBR), 1:06.60

The women’s 100 breaststroke final was an incredibly tight battle, but in the end it was Italian Benedetta Pilato getting her hands on the wall first in a time of 1:05.93, winning her first career world championship title.

Pilato, who is typically known more for her drop-dead speed as the silver medalist in the 50 breast from 2019, had to come back from fourth at the 50 to earn the victory, splitting 30.67/35.26 to claim the gold medal.

The 17-year-old owns a best time of 1:05.70, set in early April. At last summer’s Olympic Games, Pilato was disqualified in the preliminaries of this event.

Earning the runner-up spot was Germany’s Anna Elendt, who has been knocking 1:05s all year and was the lone swimmer in the field to close sub-35 in 34.97, touching in 1:05.98 for her first major international podium.

Picking up bronze was the legendary Ruta Meilutyte, the world champion in this event from 2013 who retired from the sport in 2019 and was suspended shortly thereafter until 2021 for being absent during anti-doping testing.

Dabbling in training for the last year, the Lithuanian showed up at these championships on unknown form, but showed no signs of rust tonight as she got out to a fast start (30.29) and held on to take third in 1:06.02.

Two-time defending world champion Lilly King moved through the field after turning sixth at the 50, but couldn’t quite bridge the gap up to the podium and finishes fourth in 1:06.37.

This event wasn’t fast relative to recent history, as 1:05.93 marks the slowest winning time in the event since 2005.

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Tony
3 months ago

Popovici (who’s almost 18, so only technically 17) won a gold in the 200 free with a fast time.
But, let’s not have this overshadow’s Italian Ceccon’s *WR* time winning a gold in the 100 back. As an Italian-American, I applaud him. (But, Team Caeleb Dressel/USA, as always!)

Oceanian
3 months ago

internal server error getting pretty annoying…

Robbos
3 months ago

Looking forward to seeing how fast MOC can go tonite!!!!

Smith-King-Huske-Curzan
Reply to  Robbos
3 months ago

Will Mollie O’Callaghan swim faster than her personal best time?

https://www.swimcloud.com/swimmer/1076469/

Predictions? Just curious.

Bea
Reply to  Robbos
3 months ago

Can’t wait

Calvin
3 months ago

I haven’t seen people talk about this but Claire Weinstein had the fastest last 50 of the field (29.14).

Jamesabc
Reply to  Calvin
3 months ago

Anderson and Wilson, who placed 1st and 2nd, both finished in 29.15. So Weinstein’s fast final lap by 0.01 when she was way behind isn’t really important.

Last edited 3 months ago by Jamesabc
Bea
Reply to  Jamesabc
3 months ago

Exactly, can’t deal with the arrogance. Imagine wanting to take credit for coming 10th overall

Last edited 3 months ago by Bea
Sub13
Reply to  Bea
3 months ago

I don’t think they’re being arrogant. But no one is talking about it because it’s not important. If she got a good time and had the fastest closing split that might be noteworthy

Ring Chaser
Reply to  Sub13
3 months ago

How is a 1:56 from a 15 yo not noteworthy??

Jamesabc
Reply to  Ring Chaser
3 months ago

McIntosh went a 1:55.3, over 1.5 seconds faster, earlier in the year and she is also 15. That’s noteworthy.

I’m not saying you’re not allowed to talk about it but it’s not really something important to note at this stage.

jeff
Reply to  Jamesabc
3 months ago

Weinstein is no McIntosh for sure but 1:56.9 from a 15 year old has to stack up really well on a global scale. I don’t expect anything crazy out of her from this meet but considering how well she currently fairs against age group greats like Franklin and Ledecky, I can see her being a major force on the international state within a couple years

Fobby Binke
Reply to  Ring Chaser
3 months ago

Oleksiak split 1:54 as a 15 yo.

And I’m sure several Chinese swimmers were faster at 15 yo.

jeff
Reply to  Fobby Binke
3 months ago

not sure about past Chinese swimmers, but out of the two that have been 1:54 low this season, Wikipedia reports Yang Junxuan as winning silver at the 2018 Asian Games as a 16 year old with a 1:57.48 and Tang Muhan’s 200 free times as a 17 year old at the Chinese National Champs were 1:58.1 and 1:57.8- i’m unsure of whether these are personal bests/close to personal bests though since idk where comprehensive data on Chinese swimming times is located

Oleksiak’s 1:54.94 relay split also happened as a 16 year old (assuming you’re talking about at the Rio Olympics since i couldn’t find a 1:54 from Penny earlier than that) while Weinstein still has 9 months as a 15… Read more »

Last edited 3 months ago by jeff
jeff
Reply to  jeff
3 months ago

TLDR: the Chinese swimmers with comparable times to Weinstein at 15 were clearly already peaking in the 200 free by then while Weinstein is still improving at a very rapid pace (3 seconds per year over the past 2 years)

here’s some more actual data
according to https://www.usaswimming.org/times/data-hub/age-defined-world-ranks:
in 2021, out of all swimmers born in 2005 or later, McIntosh was the fastest at 1:55.74 (weeks before turning 16) and Sims was second at 1:57.53
in 2020, out of all born in 2004 or later, MOC was the fastest at 1:58.79
in 2019, out of all born in 2003 or later, Erika Fairweather was the fastest at 1:57.96… Read more »

The unoriginal Tim
Reply to  Fobby Binke
3 months ago

Splits don’t count

Ghost
Reply to  Calvin
3 months ago

We used to call people like that “Sally save up”. But she made the team with that same strategy so it works for her!

ab88
3 months ago

Lots of impressive young European guys..!!

Fobby Binke
3 months ago

Agreed!

Swimfan
3 months ago

Weinstein and Smith 9th and 10th in the semi is big understatement, To be honest my biggest worry was Weinstein’s 1:58.6 prelim swim where she barley made it to the semis and in the semis she went a best time and I feel that is some sort of relief for when the relay happens on Wednesday. I am still picking the American women to win the relay (being optimistic) realistically they will challenge the Aussie (smith and Weinstein were only .6 seconds behind Wilson and O’Callaghan in the semi’s) and had they moved on to the final who knows what time they would have put up in a relatively weak field. And let’s not forget Walsh who dominated the 200im… Read more »

Last edited 3 months ago by Swimfan
Smith-King-Huske-Curzan
Reply to  Swimfan
3 months ago

Leah Smith has experience leading off the women’s 4 x 200 meter freestyle relay as was case at the 2017 FINA World Aquatics Championships.

CanSwimFan
Reply to  Swimfan
3 months ago

I think those predictions are wildly optimistic. Walsh is an incredible talent, but there is nothing to suggest that she can go 1:54.7 in 200 free. You’re also counting on very significant drops for Weinstein and Smith – and a repeat of Ledecky’s epic Tokyo performance. The American women have exceeded expectations in the past (as they did in the 4×200 in Tokyo), but they can hardly be considered a front-runner in this relay at this meet. They might surprise, but I also think there is a real chance they could end up off the podium unless one of Canada, Australia, or China falters.

anty75
Reply to  CanSwimFan
3 months ago

Ledecky here is in better form than in Tokyo, if US is within 1.5 seconds of leaders she can catch up, I am sure. I d say Aussie girls are slight favs but US definitely can win

Robbos
Reply to  anty75
3 months ago

Depends who’s on the last leg, no way would Ledecky give O’Callaghan 1.5 seconds start & catch her, no matter how good Ledecky is.

Smith-King-Huske-Curzan
Reply to  Robbos
3 months ago

I seriously doubt the Australians will be in third place when the anchor leg comes up. I would guess either the Canadians or the Chinese.

Jamesabc
Reply to  anty75
3 months ago

Is she? Her 400 in Tokyo was much faster but her 1500 here was much faster. I would think speed in the 400 would be more indicative of her 200 speed.

‘US can definitely win’. Anyone CAN win. But putting USA anywhere above 3rd (considering China’s decline) is not supported by the evidence.

Troyy
Reply to  Jamesabc
3 months ago

Probably skipping the 200 free played a bit of a role in her 1500 being faster.

Smith-King-Huske-Curzan
Reply to  Jamesabc
3 months ago

Assuming the same relay order from the Tokyo 2021 Olympics, it would most likely take a collapse from Zhang Yufei and Li Bingjie for the USA to sneak into third.

China women’s 4 x 200 meter freestyle relay
Junxuan
Muhan
Yufei
Bingjie

anty75
Reply to  Jamesabc
3 months ago

In my view she just looks a lot fresher, 400 was a little slower only because it was a first day of competition and there was no rival like Titmus. Don’t know if it will be enough but I expect a very stoing leg from Ledecky, may be even 1.53 low
P.s. I am not even American and completely neutral in this one, just want to see some fast swimming and an an exciting race.

Jamesabc
Reply to  anty75
3 months ago

Ledecky typically swims her best times at the start of the meet and gets slower, so your explanation doesn’t really make sense.

It doesn’t really matter if you’re American or not. The content of what you’re saying isn’t supported by the evidence. There’s nothing to suggest Ledecky will go 1:53 low. That doesn’t mean she won’t do that, she certainly might. But that prediction is not supported.

anty75
Reply to  Jamesabc
3 months ago

Well, she was 1.53.7 in Tokyo, if we assume that she is a little bit better now than 1.53 low is not such a wild suggestion. Its not only my opinion, lots of swim pros think that she is in a better form now. But of course we ‘ll see

Fobby Binke
Reply to  anty75
3 months ago

Ledecky swim fast no matter who’s in the pool lol.

She frequently broke WR in domestic meets with no opposition.

Fobby Binke
Reply to  anty75
3 months ago

Ledecky swam faster 400 free in Tokyo and already split 1:53 in Tokyo.

Doubtful she’s faster than her Tokyo split.

Smith-King-Huske-Curzan
Reply to  CanSwimFan
3 months ago

No kidding!

Smith, Leah: 1:56.90 (06/20/2022)
Weinstein, Claire: 1:56.94 (06/20/2022)
Sims, Bella: 1:57.71 (04/27/2022)
Walsh, Alex: 1:57.82 (04/27/2022)
Ledecky, Katie: 1:55.15 (04/27/2022)

Pick one of Sims or Walsh.

Furthermore, Alex Walsh’s best time in the women’s 200 meter freestyle is 1:57.82.

https://www.swimcloud.com/swimmer/356529/

The aforementioned performances do not look promising to me.

Smith-King-Huske-Curzan
Reply to  Swimfan
3 months ago

Welcome to Fantasy Island! De plane! De plane!

Caleb
Reply to  Swimfan
3 months ago

those time guesses are ridiculous but I do think the Americans will squeak it out. e.g. something like 3 x 1:56.5 and a 1:54 flat… who’s beating that?

Last edited 3 months ago by Caleb
CanSwimFan
Reply to  Caleb
3 months ago

Maybe Canada, Australia, and China?

Smith-King-Huske-Curzan
Reply to  CanSwimFan
3 months ago

Australia, Canada, China with the USA an outside shot at third.

Sub13
Reply to  Caleb
3 months ago

That’s literally slower than Australia’s aggregate flat start times

Jamesabc
Reply to  Sub13
3 months ago

Just crunched the numbers. 1:56.5 x 3 and a 1:54.00 is 7:43.5. Australia’s top 4 flat starts are 7:42.84.

If Titmus was swimming, flat start aggregate is 7:40.05 which is faster than the WR even without factoring in flying starts.

Smith-King-Huske-Curzan
Reply to  Jamesabc
3 months ago

The Australians have a major advantage. Zhang Yufei and Summer McIntosh swim the final of the women’s 200 meter butterfly in the same session as the final of the women’s 4 x 200 meter freestyle relay.

Fobby Binke
Reply to  Caleb
3 months ago

Canada, Australia, and China can beat that

Sherry Smit
Reply to  Swimfan
3 months ago

IMO: Canada is in clear contention to win this. Oleksiak (1:54 high), Ruck (1:55 mid), Smith (1:55 mid), McIntosh (1:54 low to 1:53 high). Australia will be closely for second, while USA is in bronze contention. USA: Weinstein (1:56 mid), Smith (1:55 high), Walsh (1:56 low), Ledecky (1:53 high).

Smith-King-Huske-Curzan
Reply to  Sherry Smit
3 months ago

Rebecca Smith posted a 1:57.30 split in the women’s 4 x 200 meter freestyle relay at the Tokyo 2021 Olympics.

Troyy
Reply to  Smith-King-Huske-Curzan
3 months ago

She was 1:55 high in the heats.

Smith-King-Huske-Curzan
Reply to  Troyy
3 months ago

Kayla Sanchez looks to be a better option based on results at the Tokyo 2021 Olympics.

CanSwimFan
Reply to  Sherry Smit
3 months ago

I think the Canadians are more likely to use Sanchez than Smith in the finals. Smith swam in final in Tokyo because Ruck was not in her usual form at the time.

Jamesabc
Reply to  Sherry Smit
3 months ago

Your numbers assume Summer will drop 1.4 seconds from trials, and basically assumes best case scenarios from the other 3, which is certainly possible but not guaranteed.

But yes, I agree Canada and Australia are definitely neck and neck.

Robbos
Reply to  Jamesabc
3 months ago

Yes I think it will be very close between Canada & Australia, MOC & Summer could post very fast times, Oleksiak, I think has .5 sec on Wilson, while I think Australia has the more consistent 3 & 4 swimmer to Canada, while tipping Australia, very wary as what happened last year.

Jamesabc
Reply to  Swimfan
3 months ago

Walsh’s PB is 1:57.8 and you are predicting a 1:54.7? Like… come on dude LOL.

Of course nothing is set in stone and anyone who has a lane can win. But these predictions are just ridiculous.

Troyy
Reply to  Jamesabc
3 months ago

I think this is the same person that was making insane predictions last year before the Olympics.

Smith-King-Huske-Curzan
Reply to  Jamesabc
3 months ago

Not gonna happen.

Women’s 200 meter freestyle
Personal Best Times
Sims, Bella – 1:57.53
Walsh, Alex – 1:57.82

Bella Sims Swimcloud

https://www.swimcloud.com/swimmer/667183/

Alex Walsh Swimcloud

https://www.swimcloud.com/swimmer/356529/

It looks bleak for Team USA.

Smith-King-Huske-Curzan
Reply to  Jamesabc
3 months ago

Alex Walsh is an IMer not a freestyler. Check the results (200 IM, 400 IM) from the 2022 NCAA Division I Women’s Swimming and Diving Championships for further details.

Sub13
Reply to  Swimfan
3 months ago

Oh we’re making fantasy predictions? Ok, I predict MOC will swim so fast the earth spins backwards on its axis giving her a -4:20 split

Boomer
Reply to  Swimfan
3 months ago

The delusion is real

Owlmando
3 months ago

Doess lilly swim 4×100 though lazor seems faster?

CanSwimFan
Reply to  Owlmando
3 months ago

Good question. This will be a tough call for coaching staff.

Smith-King-Huske-Curzan
Reply to  Owlmando
3 months ago

Annie Lazor will most likely swim the preliminaries. Go from there.

About James Sutherland

James Sutherland

James swam five years at Laurentian University in Sudbury, Ontario, specializing in the 200 free, back and IM. He finished up his collegiate swimming career in 2018, graduating with a bachelor's degree in economics. In 2019 he completed his graduate degree in sports journalism. Prior to going to Laurentian, James swam …

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