Gregorio Paltrinieri Swims Second-Fastest 1500 Free Of All-Time


On the final day of the 2022 World Championships, Italy’s Gregorio Paltrinieri swam the second-fastest men’s 1500 free of all time. His mark of 14:32.80 is faster than any other man in history besides Sun Yang, whose world record of 14:31.02 from the 2012 Olympic Games still stands.

Top Performers Of All-Time, Men’s 1500 Free:

  1. Sun Yang, China – 14:31.02 (2012)
  2. Gregorio Paltrinieri, Italy – 14:32.80 (2022)
  3. Grant Hackett, Australia – 14:34.56 (2001)
  4. Florian Wellbrock, Germany – 14:36.15 (2018)
  5. Bobby Finke, United States – 14:36.70 (2022)

Despite the fact that he did not break Sun’s world record, Paltrinieri did  take down his championship record time of 14:34.11 from the 2011 World Championships. Paltrinieri also broke his own European record time of 14:33.10, which was previously stood as the the second-fastest mark in history before today.

Paltrinieri took his race out very hard, being ahead of the world record line up until it eluded him in the last 50 meters of the race. This is because Sun closed his world record race in 25.68, which accounts for the majority of the time difference between him and Paltrinieri. Paltrinieri had the lead over the rest of the field, but instead of fading in the back half of the race like many of his other swims, he held on for the win this time around.

Gregorio Paltrinieri, 2022 World Championships Sun Yang, 2012 Olympic Games
50m 27.00 27.09
100m 28.57 28.71
150m 28.96 29.46
200m 29.14 29.05
250m 29.33 29.35
300m 29.32 28.97
350m 29.37 29.53
400m 29.35 29.34
450m 29.20 29.23
500m 29.20 28.89
550m 29.11 29.26
600m 29.33 29.27
650m 28.97 29.25
700m 29.17 29.34
750m 28.92 29.41
800m 29.25 29.30
850m 29.25 29.49
900m 29.24 29.38
950m 29.22 29.46
1000m 29.24 29.32
1050m 29.13 29.42
1100m 29.29 29.21
1150m 29.28 29.54
1200m 29.11 29.37
1250m 28.98 29.17
1300m 29.28 29.19
1350m 29.14 29.39
1400m 29.37 29.14
1450m 29.39 27.81
1500m 28.69 25.68
Total 14:32.80 14:31.02

At the Tokyo Olympic Games last year, Paltrinieri finished in fourth, missing the podium. He was nearly 13 seconds faster today than his 14:45.01 time from the Olympics. At this year’s world championships, he previously raced in the 800 free, where he also missed the podium and finished fourth.

Today, the Italian distance legend finally bounced back to take victory.

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swim fan
2 years ago

at the 4:33 in this video Paltrinieri is sitting on the lane line while the race is still going on! Does that make anyone else nervous!?

2 years ago

Shoutout to the greatest (undoped) distance swimmer of all time.

2 years ago

I am soooo happy for him, after last year´s illness is amazing how he has been able to bounce back and get a PB. He is 28 years old and getting pbs, amazing work ethic + he seems like a really nice guy

2 years ago

Anyone know where to find full race

2 years ago

Paltrinieri is a freak. So good to have 4 quality (and soon maybe 5 with Martens) swimmers, in Paltrinieri, Finke, Wellbrook & Romanchuck pushing each other to greatness.

2 years ago

It is also possible that Finke forced Paltrinieri to change his running tactics. In any case, the show is always guaranteed on these long distance races and it’s great for the fans!
Nice revenge for the Italian after the Olympic Games which must have left him with a lot of regrets.

Reply to  Frog29
2 years ago

Paltrinieri has never had a strong finish tbh, he has always raced like that. The difference is that in the last few years he found guys (Wellbrock to name one) who would often match his pace and then switch gears in the last 100. His race plan has always been pure pace, it just doesn’t work perfectly when he’s not in great shape, because 14:36 doesn’t cut it anymore.

2 years ago

the record by sun wang was cancelled due to his use of drugs, correct?

Reply to  wally
2 years ago

Not correct.

2 years ago

I wonder if we are now going to start seeing a “Finke Effect” where top male distance swimmers are going to be forced take their races out extremely aggressively and just risk dying at the end in order to build up enough of a lead to hold off Finke’s late charge (that or everyone else will just be content to compete for bronze).

Reply to  frug
2 years ago

Seems likely. Interestingly, that may get the world records moving again in these events

Reply to  frug
2 years ago

To be fair, Paltrinieri has always raced like that. That’s how he likes it. He said that when he doesn’t do that it’s not due to a change of plans. That said, I was surprised Wellbrock didn’t make a move earlier and Paltrinieri definitely showed that if you want to win against him that’s the way to go.

About Yanyan Li

Yanyan Li

Although Yanyan wasn't the greatest competitive swimmer, she learned more about the sport of swimming by being her high school swim team's manager for four years. She eventually ventured into the realm of writing and joined SwimSwam in January 2022, where she hopes to contribute to and learn more about …

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