Ledecky: “I feel old at these meets for the first time” (Video)

Reported by Chelsea Howard.



If you watched the 800 freestyle at Mesa, you watched two of the fastest 800 freestylers in the world compete between Katie Ledecky and Leah Smith. Ledecky put up the top time in the world this year with a 8:15.44 beating the previous time by seven seconds.

Ledecky took the race out in a 4:08.57. Just to put that split in perspective, she would have been 22nd after the prelims of the men’s 400 freestyle.

Leah Smith was second with a 8:27.55, which put her as seventh in the world rankings for this year. Sierra Schmidt was third with a 8:45.45.

Mariah Denigan was the youngest of the field by atleast 5 years. The 13 year-old held her own and finished seventh with a time of 8:58.76.

Top 8:

  1. Katie Ledecky, 8:15.44
  2. Leah Smith, 8:27.55
  3. Sierra Schmidt, 8:45.45
  4. Taylor Ault, 8:49.41
  5. Hayley McIntosh, 8:52.72
  6. Mallory Comerford, 8:53.89
  7. Mariah Denigan, 8:58.76
  8. Riley Spitser, 9:00.69

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Stan Crump
7 years ago

Couldn’t help but notice her unattached status. She staying in Cali?

Reply to  Stan Crump
7 years ago

It looks like all the Stanford swimmers (and if I’m not wrong, other collegiate swimmers) were unattached apart from the pros (Lia Neal, Leah Smith, etc.).

7 years ago

That is how it begins… Your wonderful teenage time with fantastic achievements are behind. The time when motivations are simple and very strong. You are entering adulthood now. It comes with the realization that sport is not the only thing that life is consists of.
Thank you Katie for these incredible five years to be your fan.

Reply to  Prickle
7 years ago

Yea unfortunately we will likely see her winding down with the crazy WR progressions now. A 5-6 year period of dominance is usually how long we can expect these legends to continue to push the boundaries. Thorpe did it for about 4-5 years. Phelps was special and went from 2000-2008 on his torrid pace. But that’s why he’s the GOAT.

Reply to  Pvdh
7 years ago

What you call a crazy progression is ‘simply’ a side effect of three years plan that included:
1. improving time at 800 by 8 seconds
2. improving time at 400 by 4 seconds
3. improving time at 200 by 3 seconds to be the fastest in the world
4. improving time at 100 by 3 seconds to get invited to the best ever American freestyle relay.
There was never in the history the precedent of such planning and consistency in its fulfillment.
Have you ever seen the coach and the swimmer crying together after completion of successful season.
I bet you haven’t because the completion of such plan required unseen dedication, motivation, the… Read more »

About Coleman Hodges

Coleman Hodges

Coleman started his journey in the water at age 1, and although he actually has no memory of that, something must have stuck. A Missouri native, he joined the Columbia Swim Club at age 9, where he is still remembered for his stylish dragon swim trunks. After giving up on …

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