Luma Lanes Performance of the Week: Olympic Champion Ariarne Titmus Terminates the 400m Freestyle World Record In Adelaide Clocking 3:56.40

Ariarne Titmus
TERMINATED: Ariarne Titmus after becoming the only swimmer other than Katie Ledecky herself to break a Katie Ledecky world record, in the 400m freestyle. Photo Courtesy Delly Carr (Swimming Australia)

Ariarne Titmus Terminates the 400m Freestyle World Record Clocking 3:56.40 In Adelaide

Performance of the Week, Sponsored by Luma Lanes

Australia’s Tokyo Olympic champion Ariarne Titmus has tonight blasted her way to a new world record in the women’s 400m freestyle – clocking 3:56.40 at the SA Aquatic and Leisure Centre in Adelaide.

The 21-year-old Titmus took .06secs off the previous world mark, set by the world’s greatest female swimmer, the USA’s Katie Ledecky who clocked 3:56.46 to win the Rio Olympics in 2016.

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Titmus, who beat Ledecky to win the Olympic gold in Tokyo, was under the American’s world record splits from the first 50 metres.

The girl from St Peters Western and coached by Dean Boxall went through the first 50m in 27.58, turning at the 100m in 57.13; the 200m in 1:56.99 and the 300m in 2:57.37 with her 100m breakdowns: 57.13; 59.86; 1:00.38 and 59.03.

Showing the improving depth in this event was 800 and 1500m winner, Lani Pallister (Griffith University) who swam the fourth fastest time this year – the second fastest Australian in a personal bet of 4:02.21, ahead of Kiah Melverton (St Peters Western, QLD) 4:04.49 and Leah Neale (Chandler) 4:04.97.

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PRESSURE’S OFF: Next stop Birmingham for Ariarne Titmus. Photo Courtesy:  Delly Carr (Swimming Australia).

Titmus has made the decision not to contest this year’s World Championships in Budapest next month, and will be one of the real superstar attractions at the Birmingham Commonwealth Games in July-August.

“The biggest thing that Dean (Boxall) said to me since the Olympics is that you have this freedom now and the monkey’s off your back,” Titmus told Olympic gold medallist Giaan Rooney, poolside for Amazon Prime Video.

“I have just loved swimming this last six months; going to training with no pressure, just enjoying the sport, something that is under-rated just how important that is.

“Coming here with no pressure other than the pressure I put on myself which is still pretty high…it’s fun to come here and swim like that.


“I could see Dean (cheering me on) from he side of the pool and he has (actually) been (pretty) subdued the whole week

“It’s nice that he saved all his energy up for the big one…I’m absolutely cooked, but it’s all worth it…”

Asked by Giaan Rooney whether it was the most rested she had been, Titmus replied: “Tonight has got to be up there as the most rested I’ve been (given it is on the last night).

“Usually the 400m is on the first day and going in fresh but is has been strange having the 100 and the 200 (before this) and in between I’ve just been doing light swimming and waiting to go (again) and it would be the biggest taper I’ve done and so maybe I should keep doing that from now on…

“I did not expect this at all after thoroughly enjoying my break and I took it slow in the beginning (when I first got back in) and I never thought that at this meet post the Olympics I’d be swimming faster than at an Olympics Trials and the Olympic Games but I suppose if you keep surprising yourself it keeps the sport interesting.”

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WORLD BEATING COMBO: Coach Dean Boxall and new WR holder Ariarne Titmus. Photo Courtesy: Delly Carr (Swimming Australia)

And although Titmus won’t swim at the World Championships, she will contest the Commonwealth Games.

“I’m very excited about the Commonwealth Games – we’ve got a great team going in; all our girls in the freestyle as well it’s insane.

“You have the whole final of the 200m freestyle faster than the second placed in America shows the depth we have and I’m excited to go to Birmingham and have a good race.”

And while Titmus was sitting on top of the world emerging teenage distance prodigy Sam Short (Rackleys Swim Team) caused a sensation at the pool when after seemingly in a position to swim under the required qualifying time in the 1500m, suddenly stopped at the 1400m turn – miscounting and thinking he had finished the race.

With the poolside official ringing the bell in his ear, Short pushed off the wall, for the final 100m – just missing the qualifying standard, clocking 15:05,55 (with the qualifying time at 15:04.64) – a target he would surely have beaten.

Short had already made the team in the 800m freestyle but with the 800m not on the Commonwealth Games program he faced a nervous wait before being named on Australia’s 46-strong team for Birmingham.

And after a swift change in heart Olympic gold and silver medallist Kyle Chalmers was named on both the World Championships and Commonwealth Games Team – swimming the 50 and 100m butterfly in Budapest and his main event the 100m freestyle in Birmingham.


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Rob Halprin
Rob Halprin
2 years ago

Let’s see what happens when Katie’s IN the race!

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