Laon Kim Resets 400 Free NAG Record Twice, Ultimately Clocks 3:56.79 In Final

by Ben Dornan 3

March 28th, 2023 Canada, International, News, Records

2023 CANADIAN SWIMMING TRIALS

During the first prelims session at 2023 Canadian Swimming Trials, Laon Kim established a new 13-14 boys Canadian national age group record in the 400 freestyle. Kim swam a 4:01.28 to shave 0.52 seconds off his former record of 4:01.80, which he set just a few weeks prior in February 2023.

Split Comparison

Kim – Canadian Trials 2023 Kim – February 2023
100 57.21 57.87
200 1:57.87 (1:00.66) 1:59.67 (1:01.80)
300 2:59.81 (1:01.94) 3:01.56 (1:01.89)
400 4:01.28 (1:01.47) 4:01.80 (1:00.24)

Kim opened the 400 freestyle almost two seconds quicker this time, hitting a 1:57.87 200 split compared to the 1:59.67 he started with in February. He was a bit slower, however, on the back half of the race in March, resulting in a near-identical time.

A few weeks before Trials at the 2023 Eastern Canadian Championships, Kim swam a new NAG in the 200 freestyle, taking out Cole Pratt‘s 1:54.04 from 2017 with a 1:53.32. Kim currently holds the 13 – 14 Canadian age group records in the long course 50, 100, 200, 400, and 800 freestyles. His 100 freestyle record (51.75) and former 400 free record came from February 2023, his 50 (23.81) and 200 freestyle records from March 2023, and his 800 freestyle record (8:23.15) from 2022.

Kim swims for HYACK Swim Club, based in Coquitlam, British Columbia. He is entered in 11 events at Canadian Trials: all six freestyle events, the 100 butterfly, the 200 IM, the 50 backstroke, the 200 butterfly, and the 400 IM. In the 1500 freestyle, Kim’s entry time is a 16:12.80, which is only 12 seconds slower than the 13 – 14 NAG in the event that Alex Baumann set back in 1979.

FINALS UPDATE

Kim re-broke the NAG record in the final, clocking 3:56.79 to obliterate his prelim mark by four and a half seconds.

Split Comparison

Kim – February 2023 Kim – Canadian Trials 2023 (Prelims) Kim – Canadian Trials 2023 (Final)
57.87 57.21 56.32
1:59.67 (1:01.80) 1:57.87 (1:00.66) 1:56.02 (59.70)
3:01.56 (1:01.89) 2:59.81 (1:01.94) 2:56.52 (1:00.50)
4:01.80 (1:00.24) 4:01.28 (1:01.47) 3:56.79 (1:00.27)

For context, Kim’s time would also be a U.S. National Age Group Record for 13-14 boys, overtaking Evan Pinion‘s record mark of 3:57.61 from 2009. Michael Phelps notably sits second on that list in 3:58.80.

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Dale Nesbitt
2 months ago

One to certainly keep an eye on. Canada’s 2028 Olympic squad is going to be STACKED!

Swumswims
2 months ago

Crushed it by another 4.5 seconds in finals…3:56.79👏
(Great photo on the podium beside Jr Winner Lorne Wigginton)

"we've got a boilover"
2 months ago

Congrats Laon and Coach Lenny! (Andew Lennstrom)