Brown’s 1:52.8 Anchor Leads U.S. Women To American Record In 4×200 FR


  • Tuesday, December 11th – Sunday, December 16th
  • Hangzhou, China
  • Tennis Centre, Hangzhou Olympic & International Expo Center
  • SCM (25m)
  • Prelims: 9:30 am local, 8:30 pm ET / Finals: 7:00 pm* local, 6:00* am ET
  • *The final night of finals will be one hour earlier, starting at 6:00 pm local and 5:00 am ET
  • Live Results (Omega)

The U.S. women smashed the American Record in the 800 free relay on day 5 in Hangzhou, winning the silver medal in a time of 7:35.30 to erase their previous mark of 7:38.42 from the 2010 Championships in Dubai.

They trailed early after Leah Smith led them off in 1:55.85, and then Mallory Comerford (1:53.00) and Melanie Margalis (1:53.59) clawed their way back into the race with China and Australia before giving way to Tennessee junior Erika Brown on the anchor leg.

Brown, who earned her spot on the finals relay by virtue of her 1:55.32 split in the prelims, dove in trailing China’s Wang Jianjiahe by nine-tenths of a second and went on the attack. She cut the lead in half with an opening 50 of 25.71, and though Wang ultimately pulled away, Brown never tired and ended up with the 3rd fastest split (with a takeover) in the entire field in 1:52.86. She did overtake the Australians, who were seven-tenths up heading into the anchor leg, to solidify the silver medal.

The old American Record belonged to the team comprised of Katie HoffDagny KnutsonMissy Franklin and Dana Vollmer. Check out a comparison of the splits between the two teams below:

USA, 2010 SC Worlds USA, 2018 SC Worlds
Hoff – 1:53.37 Smith – 1:55.85
Knutson – 1:56.15 Comerford – 1:53.00
Franklin – 1:55.30 Margalis – 1:53.59
Vollmer – 1:53.60 Brown – 1:52.86
7:38.42 7:35.30

In winning gold, China broke the Asian Record which was also set at those 2010 Championships, as did the bronze medal winning Australians with their Oceanian and Australian Record. Russia set a National Record as well in 4th, breaking their old mark from 2016. Ariarne Titmus‘ lead-off leg for Australia was the fastest split in the entire field (1:52.22).

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1 year ago

“Brown never tired”

I’d like to see the response from Brown to that.

A great swim!

1 year ago

I’ll welcome new additions to the 4×200 relay. Both the male & female iterations of this relay need fresh blood come 2019 and 2020.

1 year ago

Way to go Erika! Powered by the 🍊T!

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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