Emma Weyant Wins 400 IM U.S. Title, Becomes Third-Fastest 17-18 in History


Seventeen-year-old Emma Weyant, who swims for the Sarasota Sharks and is committed to the University of Virginia (c/o 2024), claimed her first national title Friday night in Palo Alto, winning the 400 IM.

She and Stanford’s Brooke Forde battled it out, practically even heading into freestyle, before Weyant pulled ahead and won in 4:35.47. She split 1:03.36/1:10.14/1:19.20/1:02.77 and took more than five seconds off her previous best time of 4:40.64 (from August of last year). Forde finished second in 4:36.06 and Wisconsin Aquatics’ Ally McHugh third in 4:38.65.

Weyant now ranks No. 3 in 17-18 girls’ history; her previous time had her 17th. She is now one of three girls to ever break 4:36 in her age group. Elizabeth Beisel‘s national age group record has stood for eight years at 4:31.78.

Top 5 in History: U.S. Girls 17-18 400 IM

  1. Elizabeth Beisel, 4:31.78, 2011
  2. Katie Hoff, 4:32.89, 2007
  3. Emma Weyant, 4:35.47, 2019
  4. Dagny Knutson, 4:36.02, 2009
  5. Becca Mann, 4:37.04, 2015

Weyant raced the 800 free on the first night of the meet, finishing sixth in 8:29.31, an eight-second drop off her prior best time. She also finished ninth in the 200 free in 1:58.36 and is entered in the 400 free and 200 IM later in the meet.

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Austin C
3 years ago

We need a Beisel/DiRado comeback

3 years ago

Beisel and Katie Hoff would still be the fastest Americans this year…..

Reply to  Ervin
3 years ago

Maya Dirado also

3 years ago

EMMA drops so much from her personal bests at this meet. No wonder she was under my radar.
She has showed already very good times. But more impressive is the range of her successful events. What are her specialties in swimming?. I’m switching my focus at this meet to watch with all my attention the rest of her loaded program at this championships.

Reply to  Yozhik
3 years ago

She’s been on a huge improvement curve the past two years. She swims mostly distance free/IM but she’s got a great breaststroke background and her backstroke has been doing really well as of late

Awsi Dooger
Reply to  anonymous
3 years ago

I think she should de-emphasize the distance freestyles in favor of the medleys. There is tremendous opportunity right now with Hosszu beyond 30. A specialist could potentially medal year after year. As you indicated, 3 of the 4 strokes are already in good shape.

Besides, at 17 Emma is not particularly young for a distance freestyler. That is the stark reality. The improvement to 8:29 is great but it would need to be followed by another 10-12 second reduction to be competitive internationally, especially since that event is now on the upswing after Ledekcy raised the spotlight beginning in 2012.

Reply to  Awsi Dooger
3 years ago

Maybe her distance background and training is what provided her to come home so well on free?!? Keep what you are doing Emma and coach!

3 years ago

Whatever happened to Dagny Knutson

Reply to  Pvdh
3 years ago

The nightmare that is USA Swimming leadership happened to Dagny

Reply to  Pvdh
3 years ago

The short answer: she turned pro too early.

3 years ago

Todd DeSorbo is smiling

Reply to  swim6847
3 years ago

Ear to ear

Ol’ Longhorn
Reply to  Hiturtaper?
3 years ago

That would be quite a distance. Dude has to be careful of wind gusts.

Reply to  swim6847
3 years ago

He is a smart dude

About Torrey Hart

Torrey Hart

Torrey is from Oakland, CA, and majored in media studies and American studies at Claremont McKenna College, where she swam distance freestyle for the Claremont-Mudd-Scripps team. Outside of SwimSwam, she has bylines at Sports Illustrated, Yahoo Sports, SB Nation, and The Student Life newspaper.

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