WATCH: Ledecky Wins Both 200/1500 FR Heats, Douglass Wins 200 IM Prelims Heat


Day 3 Prelims Recap

Note: the Olympic television rights market is fragmented. We’ve tried to track down as many as we can, but if you find some for your country that aren’t listed, let us know and we’ll add them.

Didn’t wake up in time to watch day three prelims of the Tokyo 2020 Olympics? Have no fret, SwimSwam has got (some of) the videos for you. Early this morning but in the evening in Tokyo, Katie Ledecky won both her 200 free and 1500 free prelims heats and Kate Douglass won her 200 IM heat, both snagging top seeds into the next round.

Ledecky took the win in her 200 free heat at 1:55.28, a tenth ahead of Canadian Penny Oleksiak‘s lifetime best of 1:55.38. Ledecky took the top prelims time swimming a tenth off her winning U.S. Trials time and well off her 1:54.44 season best from PSS Mission Viejo.

Into the 200 IM, Douglass comfortably led from start to finish, putting up the fastest prelims time with a lifetime best of 2:09.16. Douglass’ swim now puts her at No. 9 all-time in U.S. history.

Following four heats of the 1500 free, Ledecky was back in the water for her first-ever Olympic effort in the 1500 free. After the Olympic record was set numerous times beforehand, Ledecky broke and currently holds her first-ever 1500 free Olympic record at 15:35.35, the No. 8 fastest performance in World and Ledecky history.


  • World Record: Federica Pellegrini (ITA) – 1:52.98 (2009)
  • Olympic Record: Allison Schmitt (USA) – 1:53.61 (2012)
  • World Junior Record: Yang Junxuan (CHN) – 1:55.43 (2019)
  • 2016 Olympic Champion: Katie Ledecky (USA) – 1:53.73
  • SwimSwam Event Preview – Women’s 200 freestyle

Top 16 Qualifiers:

  1. Katie Ledecky (USA) – 1:55.28
  2. Penny Oleksiak (CAN) – 1:55.38
  3. Madison Wilson (AUS) – 1:55.87
  4. Ariarne Titmus (AUS) – 1:55.88
  5. Summer McIntosh (CAN) – 1:56.11
  6. Yang Junxuan (CHN) – 1:56.17
  7. Barbora Seemanova (CZE) – 1:56.38
  8. Siobhan Haughey (HKG) – 1:56.48
  9. Isabel Gose (GER) – 1:56.80
  10. Charlotte Bonnet (FRA) – 1:56.88
  11. Freya Anderson (GBR) – 1:56.96
  12. Allison Schmitt (USA) – 1:57.10
  13. Annika Bruhn (GER) – 1:57.15
  14. Erika Fairweather (NZL) – 1:57.26
  15. Federica Pellegrini (ITA) – 1:57.33
  16. Valeriia Salamatina (ROC) – 1:58.33


Top 16 Qualifiers:

  1. Kate Douglass (USA) – 2:09.16
  2. Katinka Hosszu (HUN) – 2:09.70
  3. Abbie Wood (GBR) / Alex Walsh (USA) – 2:09.94
  4. Maria Ugolkova (SUI) – 2:10.04
  5. Sydney Pickrem (CAN) – 2:10.13
  6. Anastasia Gorbenko (ISR) – 2:10.21
  7. Yu Yiting (CHN) – 2:10.22
  8. Alicia Wilson (GBR) – 2:10.39
  9. Yui Ohashi (JPN) – 2:10.77
  10. Cyrielle Duhamel (FRA) – 2:11.11
  11. Miho Teramura (JPN) – 2:11.22
  12. Ilaria Cusinato (ITA) – 2:11.41
  13. Sara Franceschi (ITA) – 2:11.47
  14. Kim Seoyeong (KOR) – 2:11.54
  15. Kristyna Horska (CZE) – 2:12.21

Women’s 1500 freestyle

Top 8 Qualifiers:

  1. Katie Ledecky (USA) – 15:35.35
  2. Wang Jianjiahe (CHN) – 15:41.49
  3. Erica Sullivan (USA) – 15:46.67
  4. Simona Quadarella (ITA) – 15:47.34
  5. Anastasia Kirpichnikova (RUS) – 15:50.22
  6. Sarah Kohler (GER) – 15:52.67
  7. Maddy Gough (AUS) – 15:56.81
  8. Kiah Melverton (AUS) – 15:58.96

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Joel Lin
1 month ago

Douglass looks great in the water. Just picking the nit, the sky camera showed she circle swam the last 150. Center lane = 1 or 2 meters less traveled.

Not hyperbolic to suggest the Lady Hoos should go gold & silver in the 2 IM. They showed up ready for this moment.

Little Mermaid
Reply to  Joel Lin
1 month ago

I think Walsh will over take Douglas, we watched this many times from NCAA , National meets o Trials in 200IM. KD always takes the lead in prelims, hopefully she has some left in the tank for later, give credit always chipping away at her best times. Where AW chips away her best times in finals. it will be a good competitive race with the field.

Reply to  Little Mermaid
1 month ago

Walsh appeared to lose ground on Katinka at every turn…especially the fly to back turn where it appeared she went much too deep. She has some fine-tuning to do in semis

Reply to  PhillyMark
1 month ago

Same was with Hosszu in Rio in the race against DiRado in 200BK. After each turn she was a body length ahead. Finally that long underwater get to her and she lost.
Don’t fix things if they are not broken.

Reply to  Little Mermaid
1 month ago

I think this is Douglass’s time. Her turns and mechanics looked pristine in the heats. Her backstroke, which was her “weakness” improved over trials – better rotation – maybe all that time with Regan has rubbed off on her. Lol. Her freestyle was compared to Popovici’s in Eurosport commentary. It’s a finesse stroke but powerful. We know her fly is very good. Back to the backstroke, I think Douglass learned to rotate more efficiently in backstroke – saving her legs a bit – so her breaststroke will be even stronger. This must have been a focus In camp. Her other strokes are untouchable. Breast is where she has “fallen” behind to Walsh in past. But it has everything to do… Read more »

Little Mermaid
Reply to  Swammer
1 month ago

Respect to all that you mentioned! Not just saying AW will win because, agree, swimmers improve with working and focusing on technique and fine tuning to get it right. Let’s revisit this after semis!

Reply to  Little Mermaid
1 month ago

Take this with a grain of salt because I do think Walsh wins. But she didn’t even go a best time in finals at trials. Basically went the same time she did 18 months ago.

Erika Araujo
1 month ago

Why I cannot see the videos no Brasil?

1 month ago

Rowdy saying Douglass is “decent” on the breaststroke. She goes 2:03 in the SCY 200 breast. I don’t understand his comments sometimes.

Konner Scott
1 month ago

I don’t think we’ve seen anywhere near Douglass’s best 2IM yet.

About Nick Pecoraro

Nick Pecoraro

Nick Pecoraro started swimming at age 11, instantly becoming drawn to the sport. He was a breaststroker and IMer when competing. After joining SwimSwam, the site has become an outlet for him to research and learn about competitive swimming and experience the sport through a new lenses. He graduated in …

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