WATCH: Katie Ledecky Remains Undefeated, Three-Peats In 400 Free


From Karl Ortegon’s Day 1 Finals Recap:


  • WR – 3:56.46, LEDECKY Katie USA: 7 AUG 2016
  • CR – 3:59.06, LEDECKY Katie USA: 23 JUL 2017
  • WJR – 3:58.37, LEDECKY Katie USA: 23 AUG 2014
  1. Katie Ledecky, USA 3:58.34
  2. Leah Smith, USA 4:01.54
  3. Li Bingjie, China 4:03.25

It wasn’t her fastest swim ever, but Katie Ledecky was still well ahead of the competition with a 3:58.34 to take the women’s 400 free in Championship record fashion. Additionally, it was the second-fastest time in history, behind only her own world record. USA had the 1-2 sweep, with Leah Smith grabbing silver at 4:01.54, a bit off of her lifetime best but faster than her prelims swim. Smith makes history with Ledecky, as it’s the first time since 1978 that Americans have both been on the podium at Worlds in this race on the women’s side.

China’s Li Bingjie touched third for the bronze 4:03.25, a great swim for the teenager. Another teenager was just behind, as Australia’s Ariarne Titmus was fourth in 4:04.26, just ahead of Hungary’s distance star Boglarka Kapas (4:04.77). Hungary was well-represented in this final, as yet another teenager, Ajna Kesely, posted a 4:05.77 for 6th overall.

China’s Zhang Yuhan (4:06.03) and Russia’s Veronika Popova (4:07.59) rounded out the final.

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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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