Dancing Queen Sierra Schmidt Blasts 800 Free Pan American Games Record

Jul 18, 2015; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Sierra Schmidt of the United States dances on the pool deck before competing in the women's swimming 800m freestyle final during the 2015 Pan Am Games at Pan Am Aquatics UTS Centre and Field House. Mandatory Credit: Erich Schlegel-USA TODAY Sports
Photo Courtesy: Erich Schlegel/USA Today Sports Images

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USA’s Dancing Queen Sierra Schmidt blazed her way to a Pan American Games record in the women’s 800-meter free.

Schmidt, who is well known for her pre-start antics of putting on a dancing performance, went out hard and kept on going as she won the 800 in a personal best time of 8:27.54.  That swim cleared her lifetime best of 8:28.91 and crushed Kaitlin Sandeno’s Pan Am Games mark of 8:34.65 from way back in 1999.

Schmidt’s time pushed her to 12th in the world rankings.

Schmidt is looking to battle the likes of Leah Smith for the second spot in the U.S. behind living legend Katie Ledecky in the distance freestyle events heading into the 2016 U.S. Olympic Trials.

Kristel Kobrich of Chile, the defending champion, took silver with a time of 8:29.79.

Venezuela’s Andreina Pinto rounded out the podium with a third-place time of 8:31.08.

Canada’s Brittany MacLean (8:32.06), Bahamas’ Joanna Evans (8:37.18), USA’s Courtney Harnish (8:38.00), Brazil’s Bruna Veronez (8:40.75) and Mexico’s Monserrat Ortuno (8:45.81) rounded out the top eight in the timed final event with the final two coming from heat 1 this morning.

SCHEDULED EVENTS

  • Women’s 800 free
  • Women’s 200 IM
  • Men’s 200 IM
  • Men’s 1500 free
  • Women’s 400 medley relay
  • Men’s 400 medley relay

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