2017 FINA WORLD SWIMMING CHAMPIONSHIPS
- Sunday, July 23rd – Sunday, July 30th
- Budapest, Hungary
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Following her major upset of Olympic champ Katie Ledecky, Italian superstar and world record-holder Federica Pellegrini says she won’t be contesting the 200 free at the world level any longer.
The news comes direct from Pellegrini in a post-race interview from the deck. You can watch the interview below, in its original Italian:
“These were my last three 200 freestyles,” Pellegrini says, in a rough translation of the Italian. The interviewer asks for clarification, and Pellegrini goes on to say that she’s “taking another path,” and doesn’t plan to swim the 200 again in major international competition.
Pellegrini has been a mainstay in this event for more than a decade. She’s won a medal in the 200 free at a record-setting 7 consecutive World Championships, including golds in 2009, 2011 and 2017. She set a world record in 2009 that still stands today. The run began in 2005, when Pellegrini took silver, followed by bronze in 2007, golds in 2009 and 2011 and silvers in 2013 and 2015 before her win on Wednesday in Budapest.
Pellegrini turns 29 next weekend. She’d be 31 by the time the 200 free rolled around in 2019, if she hoped to win an 8th-straight World Champs medal, and she’d be celebrating her 32nd birthday in the midst of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics – a pretty late age to be contesting events as taxing training-wise as the 200 free, though a move down to shorter events could be plausible if Pellegrini wants to keep competing.