This week, 16-year-old Summer McIntosh broke the first World Records of her career in the 400 free and 400 IM. She is already a world champion in the 200 butterfly and 400 IM and has also set some World Junior Records in the last months. Senior World Records were missing. Not anymore.
In addition, she achieved an unprecedented feat. She became the first swimmer, male or female, to hold the World Records in the 400 freestyle and 400 IM in long course meters, either at the same time or even at different times.
There are some swimmers who, in history, stood out in both events. For example, American Janet Evans was the Olympic champion in those two events at the 1988 Olympic Games. Irish Michelle Smith achieved the same feat in 1996.
At World Championships, Chinese swimmer Chen Yan was the champion of the 400 free and 400 IM in 1998, in Perth, and Ukrainian Yana Klochkova did the same in 2001, in Fukuoka.
Interestingly, the feat has never been obtained by men, both in the Olympic Games and World Championships – due in large part to the modern schedule having them in the same session at both meets.
And neither by men nor by women when it comes to holding World Records in both races. This is a primacy of Summer McIntosh.
Note: in short course meters, Spanish Mireia Belmonte is the only athlete to have achieved the feat. She was the World Record holder in the 400 free between 2013 and 2018 and has been the current World Record holder in the 400 IM since 2017.
Michael Phelps once wrote down 400 free target time 3:39 on a piece of paper, that counts for something right?!
Phelps had a 339 in him in 08. No doubt about it.
Bet in 2007 too. That was Peak Phelps.
Phelps did prepare for 400 free and swam it in Montreal. He even didn’t swim 200 fly and 400 IM.
It wasn’t pretty.
Energy distribution in 400 free is not the same as 400IM.
Phelps wasn’t gonna swim 3:39 in Beijing with all other swims he did.
To be able to break both 400 world records in the same week is nothing less than ASTONISHING.
Katie Hoff came close in 2008 to holding both WRs.
When she broke the 400IM WR at June’s Olympic trials, Hoff’s 400m freestyle PB (4.02.20) was only 0.67 outside of Pellegrini’s then 4.01.53 WR. I think Hoff was 3rd fastest ever at that time with Laure Manaudou 2nd.
That 4:02.20 was only 0.07 off the record then held by Manaudou. The following month, Rice broke her 400 IM record, 2 days before Pellegrini swam a 4:01.
Thanks for backing up my cursory research 🙂
And this is one of many reasons why she’s the best of the best!
How good was Michelle Smith!
The cheater from Ireland? LOL.
She should be removed from this article. Everyone knows her results were not legitimate.
Uh, all Chinese results from the Perth WC should also be wiped out. And, as mentioned earlier, Janet Evans was the ‘clean’ WR holder in the 400 IM at the same time as the 400 Free.
Summer is approaching Shane Gould territory. From 1971-1972 Shane held the 100, 200, 400, 800 and 1500 meter freestyle world records along with the 200 meter freestyle all simultaneously. After 1 Olympics and 5 medals she retired at age 16.
Forced into marriage and then exiled to outback. Shane Gould is more than a half of a century old story. Why not to look even deeper in the history, let say 100 years back.At her time world records were very short lived and Shane held simultaneously several records for short period of time. The case with McIntosh is quite different. Both of her world records are extremely tough.
She held all 6 records simultaneously for 9 months before the 800 free was broken. Excluding that, she held 5 records simultaneously for about 2 years. 3 of them were broken by Kornelia Ender who we know doesn’t really count.
Your summary of the situation is wildly inaccurate.
Yozhik dismissing all phenomenal female swimmers not named Ledecky.
200 IM you mean.
Wish she’d kept swimming.
Summer is absolutely extraordinary but not really approaching Shane Gould territory. Every Free record plus the 200 IM at the same time at a YOUNGER age (15) than Summer. I fully expect people to jump in about records being faster now, etc. But Shane broke the records that were there. And it took the East German women to break some. ‘Nuff said.
Summer mcintosh is eating up potential Australian gold medals for Paris in 200 and 400 freestyle hmmmmmm