2019 PRO SWIM SERIES – RICHMOND
- April 10-13, 2019
- Collegiate School Aquatics Center, Richmond, VA
- Meet information
- Psych Sheets
- Live results
- TV/Live Stream Schedule
- Live Stream – USA Swimming (Prelims & Finals)
- Live Stream – NBC Sports (Finals)
Smith, who has emerged these last couple of seasons as the #2 distance swimmer in the U.S., took 2nd behind Ledecky tonight with an 8:16.33, just over two seconds behind the world record holder’s 8:14.24. That moves her to the #8 performer of all time in this event, just 11 hundredths behind the great Janet Evans, who was the American record holder before Ledecky’s rise. Smith had previously sat in a tie for 13th.
ALL-TIME TOP PERFORMERS, WOMEN’S 800 FREE
- Katie Ledecky, 8:04.49 – 2017
- Rebecca Adlington, 8:14.10 – 2008
- Wang Jianjiahe, 8:14.64 – 2019
- Li Bingjie, 8:15.46 – 2017
- Jazmin Carlin, 8:15.54 – 2014
- Lotte Friis, 8:15.92 – 2009
- Janet Evans, 8:16.22 – 1989
- Leah Smith, 8:16.33 – 2019
- Simona Quadarella, 8:16.35 – 2018
- Boglarka Kapas, 8:16.37 – 2016
It’s nearly impossible to make Ledecky look ‘catch-able’ in a distance race, and while this is just a training meet for pros like Ledecky and Smith, it was a visual testament to Smith’s swim to see her gunning for Ledecky’s heels with the rest of the heat well back.
Smith took almost a full second off of her old best, an 8:17.21 that she did at the 2018 Pan Pacific Championships. This is actually just her third instance under 8:20, ever, and it’s a significant amount better than she was at the 2016 Olympic Trials (8:20.18) and at the 2016 Olympics (8:20.95).
In terms of the world rankings, only Ledecky and young Chinese star Wang Jianjiahe sit ahead of her.