American gold medalist Katie Ledecky continued to impress the world with her talents in the water when she won her fourth 1500-meter freestyle title at the world swimming championships on Monday.
Clocking in at 15:30.15, she was only ten seconds under her 2018 world record-breaking time. This competition also marks her 13th time fastest time in the 1500m women’s freestyle event. Furthermore, she was 14.74 seconds ahead of her 16-year-old teammate, Katie Grimes.
Grimes is the second-youngest participant in a world swimming championship since Ledecky in 2013, so the two were very supportive of one another and shared an embrace after the race.
“It is just awesome to be on the blocks next to her, be in the lane next to her, and to share this moment with her is really special,” the 25-year-old said of Grimes.
After the race, the teenager opened up about the stressful nature of the competition, admitting that she felt pressure to live up to her talented teammates. According to ESPN, she relayed the sentiments, “I was really nervous leading up to it because it’s my first world championships and Team USA has been doing a great job, so I wanted to keep that going.”
Ledecky also expressed her gratitude to Team USA and reflected on how she’s come as an athlete. “It’s pretty wild because I feel like just yesterday I was in Barcelona at my first worlds,” the swimmer shared. She added the sentiments, “It’s awesome representing Team USA year after year, and it’s an honor and a privilege, and it’s why I work hard.”
Lani Pallister says that Katie Ledecky ‘set the standard of distance swimming’ following her World Championship win.
Although this race was not Ledecky’s best time, her recent competition was still 8 seconds better than any woman has ever performed in the water. Throughout this World Championship event, the swimmer has earned two gold medals, earning her a 17th world title.
Even Ledecky’s fellow competitors recognize that when going up against the American it is nearly impossible to obtain the win.
“I don’t think that anyone will be topping Katie for a little while, but I definitely think it’s a goal for everyone moving forward,” Lani Pallister of Australia said. “She’s definitely set the standard of distance swimming in the world.”
Pallister placed third in the competition, earning her country the first medal in this race.
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