Katharine Berkoff Soars to U.S. #8 All-Time Performer in 100 Back


NC State’s Katharine Berkoff tied with Alabama’s Rhyan White for 2nd place in this morning’s 100 back prelims race, bringing Berkoff up to the 8th all-time fastest U.S. woman in the event.

She surpassed big names on the list of the top ten all-time fastest U.S. performers in the event like  Natalie Coughlin and Rachel Bootsma

Top 10 All-Time American 100 Back Performers:

  1. 57.57 – Regan Smith (2019)
  2. 58.00 – Kathleen Baker (2018)
  3. 58.31 – Olivia Smoliga (2021)
  4. 58.33 – Missy Franklin (2012)
  5. 58.43 – Rhyan White (2021)
  6. 58.63 – Phoebe Bacon (2019)
  7. 58.82 – Claire Curzan (2021)
  8. 58.88 – Katharine Berkoff (2021)
  9. 58.94 – Natalie Coughlin (2008)
  10. 59.10 – Rachel Bootsma (2012)

Three-time Olympian Coughlin won gold in the 100 back in the 2004 and 2008 Olympics. Bootsma made the U.S. Olympic Team in the 100 back in 2012, although she did not medal. Her backstroke leg helped push the U.S. 4×100 medley relay to victory at the same Olympic Games.

White and Berkoff touched the wall at 58.88, about .45 off White’s lifetime best which ranks her as the 5th all-time fastest U.S. performer. Berkhoff was ahead at the 50, splitting a 28.54 to White’s 28.65. But White barreled down the pool on the last half, posting a 30.23 to Berkoff’s 30.34.

Berkoff destroyed her previous lifetime best, 59.29, from 2019.

Regan Smith maintained her top seed spot with a 58.35 this morning (28.30/30.05). Going into tonight’s semifinal, the top three swimmers are ranked within about half a second of each other.

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3 months ago

IMO Stadden will be among these names a year from now. Smith, Bootsma and Stadden are all MN girls. Crazy how fast MN backstrokers have been in recent years.

Just Saying
Reply to  BillyBob
3 months ago

Great, but this article is about Katherine Berkoff. Let’s give cred where it is due. Great Swim!!!

Reply to  Just Saying
3 months ago

An awesome first swim. Berkoff is the real deal.

3 months ago

Doesn’t that mean Rhyan White is also #8?

Reply to  Stinky
3 months ago

Oops, saw she’s already ahead of that. My bad.