Katie Ledecky Takes Down American Record with 3:57.6 400 IM

2017 WOMEN’S PAC-12 CHAMPIONSHIPS

Katie Ledecky rewrote another chapter of the American Record book on Friday night at the 2017 Pac-12 Women’s Swimming and Diving Championships. Ledecky, who typically makes headlines in the freestyle events, busted out a new American Record in the 400 IM. Her winning time of 3:57.68 lowered the previous record of 3:57.89 done by Cal’s Caitlin Leverenz, who went on to represent the U.S. in the event at the Olympics, in 2012.

Ledecky’s Splits By 100:

  • Fly- 55.18
  • Back- 1:00.33
  • Breast- 1:09.50
  • Free- 52.67
  • Final Time- 3:57.68

In tonight’s final, Ledecky went up against teammate Ella Eastin, who won the 400 IM and set and American Record in the 200 IM at last season’s NCAA Championships. Ledecky’s weakest point of the IM is probably her breaststroke leg, but she didn’t lose much ground in that portion of tonight’s race. Ledecky split a 1:09.50 on that leg, while Eastin split a 1:08.96. At the finish, Eastin wound up with the silver medal with a 4:00.96. The Cardinal swept the podium, as freshman Allie Szekely took 3rd in 4:02.34.

All-Time Top 10 Performances in History

  1. Katinka Hosszu, 3:56.54, 2012
  2. Katie Ledecky, 3:57.68, 2017
  3. Caitlin Leverenz, 3:57.89, 2012
  4. Maya DiRado, 3:58.12, 2014
  5. Julia Smit, 3:58.23, 2010
  6. Elizabeth Beisel, 3:58.35, 2012
  7. Ella Eastin, 3:58.40, 2016
  8. Caitlin Leverenz, 3:58.46, 2012
  9. Elizabeth Beisel, 3:58.84, 2014
  10. Katinka Hosszu, 3:58.86, 2011

In This Story

65
Leave a Reply

Subscribe
Notify of

65 Comments
newest
oldest most voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Gergő
5 years ago

Hi,
Please explain guys how is this even possible? The world record on short course is 4:19,46 by you know who. Do americans swim in a special water or what?:D

Admin
Reply to  Gergő
5 years ago

Gergo – a yard is approximately 9% shorter than a meter. So a 400 yard IM is approximately 35 meters shorter than a 400 SCM IM

Gergő
Reply to  Braden Keith
5 years ago

Thanks!
Didn’t know it was in yards, I’m european, I’m used to metric system. I was sent here by someone commenting on Hosszu’s fb page something like “Ledecky will beat her very soon”, but getting close to a time Katinka set 5 years ago is far from enough for that… Don’t get me wrong, Katie is a great swimmer, but she won’t get a gold in IM in Budapest for sure.
These muscles tho https://www.instagram.com/p/BQmfRXZDXxZ/

Admin
Reply to  Gergő
5 years ago

No problem! Figured it was lost in translation somewhere. 95% of college and high school swimming in the US is done in yards.

No, it seems unlikely – and the long course 400 IM is a whole different animal than the short course 400 IM – as even Katinka showed with how long it took her to develop that full LCM IM after college. It would probably take Ledecky a few years of focus on it to challenge Katinka.

Dan
5 years ago

Does the Pac 12 let swimmers exhibition events outside of their 3 events? Katie is out of events, but I’d be interested in seeing what she can do in the mile.

northernsue
Reply to  Dan
5 years ago

Other commenters were saying yes, but perhaps not in the finals. Listening to Greg Meehan’s interview yesterday, however, I doubt Katie will swim the mile here. When asked about the choice to do the 400IM/200 double, he said there was no need for Katie to swim the 1650 so much. It seems this is like 2014 US Nationals before Pan Pacs, when Katie skipped the 1500 and saved it for the next competition.

Rachel
5 years ago

Hosszu’s NCAA record might be in danger. I can’t believe I’m saying that.

Swim Mom Yo
5 years ago

How exciting are the NCAA championships going to be? Not only American, but World records are going to be up for grabs.

Coach John
Reply to  Swim Mom Yo
5 years ago

this isn’t 2004… it’s SCY buddy

bobo gigi
5 years ago

Last 25 yards
She looks exhausted. 🙂 Yes, the 400 IM is painful. 🙂
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O-fphEMGxGM

Accswimfan
Reply to  bobo gigi
5 years ago

She looked pretty damn good to me coming home, especially considering she is not tapered.

Coach Mike 1952
Reply to  Accswimfan
5 years ago

Both of you are correct. Katie did look good, & AFTER the race, she did look exhausted. Rick Burk & Amy Van Dyken – the commentators – both mentioned that you rarely see KL breathing hard like that. IMHO she did look “spent”.

completelyconquered
Reply to  bobo gigi
5 years ago

Is there a video of the whole race?

bobo gigi
5 years ago

Why I’m not surprised? She was in 4.00.65 while not particularly training for IM at NCAP and while not being fully tapered.
She has great IM training partners at Stanford.
As a big 400 IM fan I’m very pleased to see she continues to have fun with that grueling event and tries to improve her weak strokes like back and breast. Maybe it’s just for fun and she has no desire to swim the 400 IM at worlds or olympic games. But remember that I told you after Rio that, I would like to see her try seriously the 400 IM until Tokyo because I was sure she could play with Hosszu. Of course it’s well different in… Read more »

Michael
5 years ago

Part of me wants to see her attempt this in 2020, but that’s also the same day as the 400 free…maybe she could cruz the free and still win it, but she’d have to give it her all in order to beat Katinka.

Carlo
Reply to  Michael
5 years ago

I,m not sure katinka will still be around in 2020. Won’t she be approaching 30 by then?

Coach Mike 1952
Reply to  Carlo
5 years ago

Even if she is, swimming is both her passion & livelihood. Did it stop MP? Tony Ervin? Dara Torres? And yes, the 4IM is grueling – it’s certainly not a 50 or 100. But Katinka whole program is grueling. Let us see how she progresses next 3+ years leading to Tokyo.

Gergő
Reply to  Carlo
5 years ago

She’s already preparing for Tokyo, I’m sure you will see her in there (on the podium).

Prickle
Reply to  Michael
5 years ago

In 2020 Katinka Hosszu will be 31. Does it say anything to you? If she decides to swim as many races as she did in Kazan I expect her to be in trouble with 400IM in Budapest where this race isn’t the first one. Fortunately for her there is not much of competition left after Ye Shiwen got out of the picture.

Coach Mike 1952
Reply to  Prickle
5 years ago

Not much competition – until now that is. The commentator last night noted how KL has gotten bigger & stronger, wider shoulders, since coming to Stanford. A bigger, STRONGER KL? Look out! She just keeps getting faster. KL might even rethink her previous comments & feelings about a sub-8 LCM 800 free for a woman simply not being possible. As we know all too well, LCM is different from SCY & even SCM. Yes, KL can certainly make improvements, but holy cow, the American record swimming this for only the second time (?) since coming to Stanford? It seems that almost whatever she puts her mind to in this regard could happen. Like Nuotto said above, now she has the… Read more »

Prickle
Reply to  Coach Mike 1952
5 years ago

I agree with everything you said Coach. But I would suggest to be careful with LCM predictions based on her amazing record at SCY. Because of a lot of underwater the short pool race benefits sprinters and those who has stroke technique issues. And Katie’s backstroke is still not good enough for 20m longer distance. I don’t think that Hosszu will be faster 4:30 at WC this summer, but I also don’t see Katie Ledecky dropping 8 sec at 300m(back,fly,breast).

nuotofan
Reply to  Michael
5 years ago

The same day as the 400 free relay. The women 400 free is scheduled in the following day.
If you remember, already in the winter before Rio Ledecky spoke to race in the 400im in the first day of competition, without individual races for her.
But she wasn’t yet ready to make Ledeckian things in this event.
Now, has the time, the right place and the right coach to train and likely become a “nightmare” also for the Imers…

bobo gigi
Reply to  Michael
5 years ago

Michael, a little but important correction.
The women’s 400 IM is on the first day and the women’s 400 free is on the second day.
So KL can swim both events in Tokyo.
On the men’s side both events are on day 1.

Accswimfan
5 years ago

That sounds an awful bit sexist don’t you think….

Accswimfan
Reply to  Accswimfan
5 years ago

Thank you for deleting the previous comment!
Unnecessary talk on an article like this.

About Lauren Neidigh

Lauren Neidigh

Lauren Neidigh is a former NCAA swimmer at the University of Arizona (2013-2015) and the University of Florida (2011-2013). While her college swimming career left a bit to be desired, her Snapchat chin selfies and hot takes on Twitter do not disappoint. She's also a high school graduate of The …

Read More »