Ledecky Swims #3 1500 FR Performance Ever, Ties Phelps With Most Individual Worlds Golds


Another year, another article about Katie Ledecky‘s dominance in distance freestyle. What’s new?

In the finals of the women’s 1500 free at the 2023 World Championships, Ledecky clocked a time of 15:26.27, which was the third-fastest performance of all-time in the event. It was also her fastest performance since she broke the World Record in 2018. Now, she owns the 16 fastest performances ever in the event.

Ledecky won her Worlds race by a fully 17.04 seconds.

All-Time Top Performances, Women’s 1500-Meter Freestyle:

  1. Katie Ledecky — 15:20.48 (2018)
  2. Katie Ledecky — 15:25.48 (2015)
  3. Katie Ledecky — 15:26.27 (2023)
  4. Katie Ledecky — 15:27.71 (2015)
  5. Katie Ledecky — 15:28.36 (2014)
  6. Katie Ledecky — 15:29.51 (2020)
  7. Katie Ledecky — 15:29.64 (2023)
  8. Katie Ledecky — 15:30.15 (2022)
  9. Katie Ledecky — 15:31.82 (2017)
  10. Katie Ledecky — 15:34.23 (2014)
  11. Katie Ledecky — 15:35.35 (2020)
  12. Katie Ledecky — 15:35.65 (2017)
  13. Katie Ledecky — 15:35.98 (2019)
  14. Katie Ledecky — 15:36.53 (2013)
  15. Katie Ledecky — 15:37.34 (2020)
  16. Katie Ledecky — 15:37.99 (2023)

With her win, Ledecky also broke a myriad of swimming records. Her 1500 free gold was her 15th individual World Championships gold medal, and she is now tied with Michael Phelps as the swimmer with the most individual World Championships gold medals in history. In addition, she also won her 20th overall Worlds gold, making her the first female swimmer to win 20 Worlds golds.

Ledecky now has five World titles in two separate events, the 800 free (2013, 2015, 2017, 2019, 2022) and the 1500 free (2013, 2015, 2017, 2022, 2023). She is the first swimmer to ever have five World titles in multiple events.

Ledecky’s Splits:

50m 26.04
100m 30.20
150m 30.56
200m 31.07
250m 31.19
300m 31.38
350m 31.29
400m 31.29
450m 31.28
500m 31.47
550m 31.08
600m 31.40
650m 30.80
700m 30.96
750m 30.90
800m 31.16
850m 30.90
900m 30.99
950m 30.96
1000m 30.88
1050m 30.87
1100m 31.32
1150m 31.21
1200m 31.17
1250m 31.23
1300m 31.13
1350m 30.92
1400m 31.04
1450m 30.51
1500m 29.17
Total 15:26.27

In This Story

Leave a Reply

Notify of

oldest most voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
tea rex
7 months ago

Does anyone have a picture of the race near the finish that includes the other swimmers for context? I tried to screenshot the NBC broadcast but no one else was in the lens the last 100.

Reply to  tea rex
7 months ago

No screen shots unfortunately. The commentator said Quadarella had recently turned at the last wall as Katie was finishing. She was 17 seconds behind–so probably 1/2-2/3 of the way up the pool.

Last edited 7 months ago by Abcdefg
Reply to  tea rex
7 months ago

Actually the race was pretty interesting: 5 swimmers under 15:50

7 months ago

I am glad to see her smashing the water with her fist again. Haven’t seen that for so long time.

Reply to  Yozhik
7 months ago

She did it at trials this year as well after her 800 free.

Reply to  LBSWIM
7 months ago

The next level of her emotional satisfaction is throwing her swimming cap in the pool 😀
This body language at the end of the race or her tears are the only moments when we can look inside otherwise always politically correct and interview-positive but actually very emotional person.

Last edited 7 months ago by Yozhik
7 months ago

Ledecky is the BOMB!!! Been seeing her a long time and she lives up to all the hype…FABULOUS

7 months ago

Taking the Nesty Plunge

Katie Ledecky
400 FR – under repair
800 FR – TBD
1500 FR – fixed

The general consensus is for every year a female swimmer was coached by Greg Meehan, it takes two years for the next coach to repair the damage.

Reply to  Weinstein-Smith-Ledecky-Sims
7 months ago

Why do you have such a mean bone to pick with Greg? Doesn’t it get exhausting? Whether he’s to blame or not, the world would be so much better if you take that energy and put it to something more positive.

Reply to  LBSWIM
7 months ago

Since the turn of the decade, the Stanford women’s swimming program has been a debacle. The performance of the Stanford women’s swimming program at the Olympic Team Trials – Wave II was a disaster. Greg Meehan burning out Simone Manuel is inexcusable and unforgivable. The highest profile female swimmers in USA Swimming have recently departed the Stanford:

Ledecky, Katie
Manuel, Simone
Smith, Regan

A post graduate swimming contingent no longer exists. Greg Meehan was a such an inspiration that Brooke Forde decided not to pursue a career in swimming.

Claire Curzan has entered the transfer portal after one year at Stanford.

How Greg Meehan remains employed at Stanford University is a mystery.

Reply to  LBSWIM
7 months ago

I heard Meehan drove to his house and kicked his dog. That’s really the only explanation for this level of obsession lol

Reply to  Weinstein-Smith-Ledecky-Sims
7 months ago

hasn’t Meehan say that he didn’t quite know what to do with Ledecky? I don’t blame him for not knowing exactly how to improve a swimmer who was a 5x Olympic gold medalist and world record holder in 3 individual events before starting college

Reply to  jeff
7 months ago

Yet, Anthony Nesty has turned back the clock to the Bruce Gemmell era especially in the W 800 FR and W 1500 FR with the W 400 FR still pending.

7 months ago
7 months ago

Those splits are just so consistent. Outside of the 1st 100 and last 50, every split was between 30.51 and 31.47, with no real slowing down whatsoever.

7 months ago

As someone who is very sprint inclined, it boggles my mind that someone is capable of maintaining a pace per 100 in a 1500 that is within 2 seconds of their 400 pace.

Reply to  MTK
7 months ago

distance swimmers gonna distance

Reply to  MTK
7 months ago

That’s how distance swimmers roll….

Reply to  MTK
7 months ago

It’s crazy how stuff like that happens. Ledecky’s first 800 split still would have won gold in the 800 at most major meets in the last decade.

But also the first 200 splits of a 400 are insane. Ledecky, McIntosh and Titmus can all push out the first half of a 400 in a time that would almost final in the individual 200.

7 months ago


About Yanyan Li

Yanyan Li

Although Yanyan wasn't the greatest competitive swimmer, she learned more about the sport of swimming by being her high school swim team's manager for four years. She eventually ventured into the realm of writing and joined SwimSwam in January 2022, where she hopes to contribute to and learn more about …

Read More »