McKeown Erases Smith’s Day-Old Junior World Record In 200 Back


Just a day after American 15-year-old Regan Smith broke the junior world record in the 200 back, Australian 16-year-old Kaylee McKeown has one-upped her, lowering the record to 2:06.76 in the World Championships final.

Smith set the record in semis, going 2:07.19. Swimming just one lane over, McKeown was 2:07.40, a tenth off the old junior world record, but qualifying just a single spot behind Smith as both made the Worlds final.

Tonight in Budapest, though, it was all McKeown, as she rolled to fourth place in 2:06.76, a few tenths out of medal contention and lowering the junior world mark by four more tenths of a second.

As we noted yesterday, neither swimmer is yet the fastest junior in history. That title belongs to Missy Franklinwho set the world record of 2:04.06 as a 17-year-old in 2012. FINA didn’t start tracking junior world records until 2013. Comparing directly to McKeown, Franklin was 2:05.10 as a 16-year-old.

McKeown, 16 and born in 2001, will have the rest of this year and all of 2018 to continue lowering the record. Smith, currently 15 and born in 2002, will have one more year than that, until the end of 2019. So it’s not out of the question that we’ll see this record change hands a few more times before it’s all said and done.

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About Jared Anderson

Jared Anderson

Jared Anderson just can’t stay away from the pool. A competitive career of almost two decades wasn’t enough for this Minnesotan, who continues to get his daily chlorine fix. A lifelong lover of writing, Jared now combines the two passions as Senior Reporter for, covering swimming at every level. He’s an …

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