Swimming, Day 3 - Women's 1500m freestyle: Ledecky (USA) breaks World Record for second Barcelona gold

BCN2013 - Swimming

 Katie Ledecky shattered the women's 1500m freestyle world recordSixteen-year-old American Katie Ledecky shattered the women's 1500m freestyle world record and won the world crown in an epic duel with defending champion Lotte Friis (DEN) to claim her second title of the Barcelona World Championships. Ledecky, Olympic 800m freestyle gold medallist and newly crowned world 400m freestyle champion, was locked in a battle with Friis throughout the 30-length race, edging clear in the final 100 metres to win in 15:36.53. Friis, who took the world silver in 2009 and gold in 2011, touched in 15:38.88 and was also inside the long-standing 15:42.54 world mark set by Ledecky's fellow American Kate Ziegler in Mission Viejo, California, on June 17, 2007. Lauren Boyle (NZL), Barcelona 400m freestyle bronze medallist, came through strongly in the later stages to claim another bronze in 15:44.71.

Ledecky led through the first 250 metres but Friis was in front by the 300m mark as they swam neck and neck in what had become a race for two, with the rest scrapping for bronze until Boyle detached herself from the others. Ledecky hit the front at 1300 metres and ensured the second US victory of the evening after Missy Franklin's win in the 100m backstroke.

World Record: Katie Ledecky (USA), 15:36.53 – July 30, 2013 in Barcelona (ESP)
Championships Record: Katie Ledecky (USA), 15:36.53 – July 30, 2013 in Barcelona (ESP)
Best performance of the current season (since January 2013): Katie Ledecky (USA), 15:36.53 – July 30 in Barcelona (ESP)
2003-2011 winners in this event: 2003 – Hannah Stockbauer (GER, 16:00.18); 2005 – Kate Ziegler (USA, 16:00.41); 2007 – Kate Ziegler (USA, 15:53.05); 2009 – Alessia Filippi (ITA, 15:44.93); 2011 – Lotte Friis (USA, 15:49.59)
The best in this event (1. most victories or 2. fastest time): Hannah Stockbauer (GER, 2001 & 2003) and Kate Ziegler (USA, 2005 & 2007)
Not in the Olympic programme

QUOTES:

Gold medal winner: Katie Ledecky (USA)

"This World Record, it really just shows you what happened when you get to an international competition and race the fastest people in the world, we pushed each other the whole way, you want to compete with the swimmers next to you and keep up with the race so it brings the best time."

"My stroke is feeling better than ever, I just keeping up the momentum I started in the 400m freestyle. This victory got me excited and it got me relaxed for my other races. It gave me the confidence that I could put up some additional good swims. I've been feeling really good this week."

"I knew I was going pretty fast, during the race I thought that whoever was gonna touch first was going to get that world record, I just had to not picking it up to early or too late."

Silver medal winner: Lotte Friis (DEN)

"It's just really nice to be part of all the good races."

"I'm really happy with my own performance and just looking forward to next season."

"I was actually expecting Ledecky to move away a little bit sooner but I'm really happy that I kept up with her. She's an amazing swimmer and I'm just very happy to swim next to her and race against her."

"I wanted to show people that I can do better than what I did at the London Olympics."

Bronze medal winner: Lauren Boyle (NZL)

"I'm so surprised by time, I don't have that much experience swimming the 1500m freestyle. Today and yesterday I took off more than 30 seconds off my best time so I'm very happy."

"I knew the race would be a fast one with Ledecky and Friis. I had to really make sure that I didn't go too fast in the beginning, I was quite surprised that I could actually see Katie's and Lotte's feet about the last 500m so I just kept going."