Olympic gold medalist and world record holder Katie Ledecky is expected to make her professional debut later this month at the Indianapolis stop of the 2018 TYR Pro Swim Series, according to a USA Swimming press release.
Ledecky announced in March that she had decided to forgo her final two years of eligibility at Stanford and going professional in the run-up to the 2020 Olympics.
Ledecky has been racking up the Pro Swim Series points for years now — she was last year’s champion — but up to now has been ineligible to take advantage of the cash prizes, or the BMW lease that goes to the overall winner, because of NCAA eligibility rules. With that concern out of the way, Ledecky now stands to earn some tidy little money in Indy. First place winners in each event earn $1,000, with second place earning $600 and third place $200.
With the Indianapolis stop being before NCAAs last year, Ledecky didn’t swim there, but she did swim at the May PSS event in Atlanta. There she won the 400 free, 200 free, and 800 free, meaning she would have earned $3,000 had she been professional at that point.
Full Press Release Courtesy of USA Swimming
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – Olympic gold medalists Katie Ledecky (Bethesda, Md./Stanford Swimming), Simone Manuel (Sugar Land, Texas/Stanford Swimming), Lilly King (Evansville, Ind./Indiana University), Nathan Adrian (Bremerton, Wash./California Aquatics), Matt Grevers (Lake Forest, Ill./Tucson Ford Dealers Aquatics) and Allison Schmitt (Canton, Mich./Pitchfork Aquatics) are expected to lead a loaded field for next week’s TYR Pro Swim Series at Indianapolis, May 16-19 at the Indiana University Natatorium.
The four-day meet opens with timed finals for the 1500-meter freestyle on Wednesday, May 16 at 6 p.m. EDT. Thursday, May 17 through Saturday, May 19 will feature 10 a.m. EDT prelims followed by nightly finals at 7 p.m. EDT. Single- and all-session tickets are on sale now: https://www.usaswimming.org/utility/indianapolis-ticket-information
Reigning Olympic and world champions, Ledecky and Manuel will be competing for the first time since leading Stanford University to its second straight NCAA women’s title.
King will headline a large group of Indiana University-based competitors, including fellow Olympic medalists Cody Miller (Las Vegas, Nev./Sandpipers of Nevada) and Blake Pieroni (Valparaiso, Ind./Indiana University), as well as Zane Grothe (Boulder City, Nev./Mission Viejo Nadadores), who currently shares the men’s TYR Pro Swim Series lead with Olympic medalist and world champion Chase Kalisz (Bel Air, Md./Athens Bulldog Swim Club), who also will compete in Indianapolis.
Fellow individual Olympic medalists expected to join the field include Cullen Jones(Irvington, N.J./Wolfpack Elite) and Leah Smith (Pittsburgh, Pa./Tucson Ford Dealers Aquatics).
Coverage of each finals sessions will be available on various NBC Sports platforms, including live coverage on NBC Sports Network on Saturday, May 19 at 7 p.m. EDT. Thursday, May 17 finals will be streamed live online and via the NBC Sports app, while Friday, May 18 finals will air live on the Olympic Channel at 7 p.m. EDT. Friday’s finals session also will re-air Sunday, May 20 on NBC Sports Network at 7 p.m. EDT. A live webcast of daily prelims and the Wednesday, May 16 distance session will be available at usaswimming.org.
This meet marks the fourth of six stops of the 2018 TYR Pro Swim Series. Following last month’s event in Mesa, Arizona, Kalisz and Grothe lead the men’s standings with 46 points, while Canada’s Taylor Ruck, tops the women’s leaderboard with 33 points.
Also continuing in Indianapolis is USA Swim Squads, a new feature for 2018 that allows USA Swimming National Team members to compete for team points and a grand prize throughout this year’s events. Four teams, captained by Olympic legends Natalie Coughlin, Lenny Krayzelburg, Jason Lezak and Kaitlin Sandeno, will feature six active athletes designated across six event categories (one athlete per team per category) who are eligible to score points in a maximum of two events from that category – free, back, breast, fly, IM or flex. Team Krayzelburg leads the way with 267 points heading into Indianapolis.
In the 2018 TYR Pro Swim Series, swimmers may earn awards for top-three finishes in all individual Olympic events. At each meet, $1,000 will be provided for a first-place finish, $600 for second and $200 for third. Participants will be awarded points in each individual Olympic event throughout the duration of the series (Five points for first, three for second, one point for third place).
At 2018 Phillips 66 Nationals, the point totals will double to 10 points for first place, six for second and two points for third place. The final series tally will be computed after the 2018 Phillips 66 National Championships, slated for July 25-29 in Irvine, California, and the prizes will be awarded at that time.
The top eligible male and female overall point total winners in the series will earn a one-year lease of a BMW vehicle, as well as a $10,000 series bonus. For more information on the TYR Pro Swim Series, visit