Ariarne Titmus Finally Breaks Katie Ledecky’s World Record In The 400 Free

2022 AUSTRALIAN SWIMMING CHAMPIONSHIPS

Ariarne Titmus was the first to beat Katie Ledecky in the 400 free at a major international meet, defeating her at the 2019 World Championships and the 2021 Olympic Games. Today, she became the first to break one of Ledecky’s world records.

Titmus swam a time of 3:56.40 at the 2022 Australian Swimming Championships, just 0.06 seconds faster than Ledecky’s mark of 3:56.46. Ledecky set her former world record six years ago at the 2016 Olympic games.

With her swim, the 21-year-old Australian now has three out of the four fastest-ever times in the women’s 400 free. She first scared the world record when she swam a time of 3:56.90 at Olympic trials last year, and then got even closer to it when she beat Ledecky with a time of 3:56.69 in Tokyo. Tonight, she finally accomplished the feat of being the quickest in history after being so close for so long.

Top 5 Performances In History, Women’s 400-Meter Freestyle:

  1. Ariarne Titmus – 3:56.40 (2022)
  2. Katie Ledecky – 3:56.46 (2016)
  3. Ariarne Titmus – 3:56.69 (2021)
  4. Ariarne Titmus – 3:56.90 (2021)
  5. Katie Ledecky – 3:57.37 (2021)

Titmus is well-known is known for her back half, having run down Ledecky during the last 100 meters the last two times she beat her. However, this time around, she was actually stronger on her first 200 meters of the race. She flipped in 1:56.99 at the 200 mark compared to Ledecky’s 1:57.11, but Ledecky actually had a stronger finish. Titmus went 1:59.41 on the last 200, while Ledecky closed in 1:59.35.

Titmus vs. Ledecky: Comparative Splits

Ariarne Titmus, 2022 Australian Trials (New World Record) Katie Ledecky, 2016 Olympic Games (Former World Record)
50m 27.58
27.73
100m 29.55 (57.13)
29.32 (57.05)
150m 29.70 (1:26.83) 29.94 (1:26.99)
200m 30.16 (1:56.99) 30.12 (1:57.11)
250m 30.11 (2:27.10) 30.30 (2:27.41)
300m 30.27 (2:57.37) 30.21 (2:57.62)
350m 29.75 (3:27.12) 29.92 (3:27.54)
400m 29.28 (3:56.40) 28.92 (3:56.46)
Total 3:56.40 3:56.46

With her world record, Titmus is now the Olympic Champion (2021), short course World Champion (2018), long course World Champion (2019), short course world record holder (2018), and long course world record holder (2022) in the women’s 400 free. With a clean sweep of all the major international accolades in the event, she most likely cements herself as one of the greatest female 400 freestylers in history.

This race adds another chapter to what is arguably the greatest rivalry in our sport right now. Although Titmus broke Ledecky’s world record, she will not be racing against her at the FINA World Championships next month, instead opting to focus on the Commonwealth Games. If Ledecky wants to take her record back, she will likely have to swim the 400 free in a race by herself. In addition, the American has not been under 3:57 in five years, meaning she will have to go faster than she has in a long, long, time in order to beat Titmus’s new mark.

Ledecky and Titmus’s next potential showdown could be the USA vs. Australia duel in the pool, which is set to happen in late August after World Championships and the Commonwealth Games.

Titmus’s swim was the second world record set at this meet, as Zac Stubblety-Cook broke the men’s 200 breaststroke world record on Wednesday.

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aquajosh
1 month ago

She took months off after Tokyo and is swimming faster than ever. We might need to rethink this idea of swimming being a year-round sport. Look at how fast swimming has gotten from the junior to senior levels despite the pandemic truncating or altogether eliminating in-water training for months at a time. It’s something to think about, and certainly might help foster longevity in a very physically and emotionally-draining sport.

THEO
1 month ago

what a bummer she won’t race ledecky this year…

Dan tm
Reply to  THEO
1 month ago

Dual in the pool?

CADWALLADER GANG
Reply to  THEO
1 month ago

we got duel in the pool

jamesjabc
1 month ago

The comparisons to Ledecky are unnecessary. Arnie just broke a WR. Let her have her time. The strange commenters in here listing Ledecky’s medals (and, as usual, framing sentences like a robot) are sad. This isn’t about her.

Admin
Reply to  jamesjabc
1 month ago

I don’t get it. By definition, if she breaks Katie Ledecky’s WR, isn’t that a comparison to Katie Ledecky?

Robbos
Reply to  Braden Keith
1 month ago

Exactly!!! Both are great swimmers. I do however understand the comparison & even Titmus said this about Ledecky after the race.

“I can’t put myself up next to her. What she has done for female swimming has been insane: She’s been at this level for 10 years,”

Swimswamswum
Reply to  Braden Keith
1 month ago

Ledecky is undisputed female swimmer GOAT.

No question about that.

Even Titmus and Boxal keep highly praising and referring Ledecky.

But this week is when Titmus break 400 WR which was predicted by many to last for years.

Last edited 1 month ago by Swimswamswum
Robbos
Reply to  Swimswamswum
1 month ago

You have respect that!!!!

jamesjabc
Reply to  Braden Keith
1 month ago

Comparisons between them in the 400 are great and obviously relevant.

But this comment section is full of ‘WELL LEDECKY HAS 9218 WORLD RECORDS IN THE 1500 SO SHE’S SO MUCH BETTER, F*** TITMUS AHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHHDHSBKSFBKSBSFKB”.

It gets tiring. Why not just let someone enjoy their achievement? It’s honestly like if I wrote ‘WELL PHELPS HAS WAY MORE OLYMPIC GOLDS SO LEDECKY IS SH*T’ on every article about Ledecky. It’s stupid.

mcmflyguy
Reply to  jamesjabc
1 month ago

ummm… yea. she is, has been and will always be compared to Katie. Not in an inferior way, but those two will be compared against each other in every aspect of distance swimming for decades. until more people come up and beat their times.

ICU
1 month ago

“Finally”… like it’s a surprise, of course Swimswam trying to play down Titmus’ achievement cause she beat the great American

Jojorab
Reply to  ICU
1 month ago

as is Tradition.

jamesjabc
Reply to  ICU
1 month ago

Dude you need to chill. “Finally” to me sounds like they were expecting it, not like it’s a surprise.

You constantly post anti-American rubbish and post strange takes about how Australia is the best. Other Aussies don’t agree with you. You’re just trolling. Stop it.

Troyy
Reply to  Yanyan Li
1 month ago

Ignore the troll.

Swimmertriguy
Reply to  ICU
1 month ago

Agreed as an Aussie this is how it reads. The record was so good and it took her long enough to break it. Wouldn’t say finally if Ryan Murphy or someone breaks larkins 200 back wr

Sherry Smit
1 month ago

Not surprising at all considering how close she has been multiple times. 3:56.9, 3:56.6, now 3:46.4. Only a 2 tenth drop, so amazing

Sub13
Reply to  Sherry Smit
1 month ago

That 3:46.4 is quite the drop lol

Troyy
Reply to  Sub13
1 month ago

She’s coming for the men’s WR next.

Swimswamswum
Reply to  Troyy
1 month ago

Biedermann in shambles.

WestCoastRefugee
1 month ago

I need to see video of Dean over the last 50-100M to verify this please.

Swimswamswum
Reply to  WestCoastRefugee
1 month ago

It’s all in Prime Video.

Amazon Prime did one of the best swimming meet coverage I’ve seen

Last edited 1 month ago by Swimswamswum
Swimmom
Reply to  Swimswamswum
1 month ago

Can it still be accessed on Amazon prime?

jeff
Reply to  Swimmom
1 month ago

yes, i only have experience watching it on mobile but I just searched up “Australian swimming” on the prime video and the streams from this meet were the first things to pop up. They’re all recorded

Last edited 1 month ago by jeff
Stephen
Reply to  Swimmom
1 month ago

It’ll be on there for ages……last years Trials are still on there.

Swimswamswum
Reply to  Swimmom
1 month ago

Yes.

I’m not in Australia. And I watched it live everyday easy. The videos are all there. Type “Australia Swimming 2022” in the search box

Noah
1 month ago

Shows that breaks aren’t bad and shouldn’t be punished. She took a few MONTHS off and then broke the WR.

Swimswamswum
Reply to  Noah
1 month ago

Simone Biles and Naomi Osaka can confirm.

Sub13
Reply to  Noah
1 month ago

Didn’t Dahlia say that she swam the least she ever has in her life training for ISL before breaking a WR? There might be something to this.

Jason
Reply to  Noah
1 month ago

couldn’t agree Noah – could be the mental health reset of just a better balance of training intensity. Some swimmers do over train, like Mack Horton who is incredibly slow in-season and relies heavily on a good taper. Let this be lesson

Jason
Reply to  Jason
1 month ago

that was – couldn’t agree more

Mako
Reply to  Noah
1 month ago

Not just in swimming, in work life too. We need to have breaks mentally and physically. Our performance will be much higher then.

Awsi Dooger
1 month ago

There are some Australians in these comments mocking the notion that Titmus was skipping the world championships because she was scared and not ready. Meanwhile Titmus emphasized that theme herself, during the interview following the 200. The topic was lengthy delay before resuming training after Tokyo, and therefore the likelihood of reduced form. Titmus said,”And that’s why I didn’t want to go to worlds, because I didn’t think I’d be ready at all.” Then she explained that after coming back they have changed a few things and reduced the pressure.

Here is the clip: https://youtu.be/SbQ0rGaEaG8?t=38

Swimswamswum
Reply to  Awsi Dooger
1 month ago

“There are some Australians in these comments mocking the notion that Titmus was skipping the world championships because she was scared and not ready. ”

Why lies?

There were Americans.

Some Australians wrote that they should go to win worlds titles.

Miss M
Reply to  Awsi Dooger
1 month ago

I think it is the language of scared that many Aussies were reacting against. She said she didn’t think she’d be ready. That is not the same as being scared.

With a three year lead up to Paris, only wanting to focus on one meet this year is not a silly decision – she’s keeping the big picture in mind.

About Yanyan Li

Yanyan Li

Yanyan is from Madison, New Jersey and spent the majority of her life there. Although she wasn't the greatest competitive swimmer, she learned more about the sport of swimming through scoring countless dual meets, being a timer, and keeping track of her teammates' best times for three years as a …

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