Kate Douglass Tears Down 12-Year-Old American Record in 200 Breaststroke

Photo Courtesy: Peter H. Bick

Kate Douglass Sets American, U.S. Open Marks in 200 Breast

Rebecca Soni had stood since 2012 as the fastest American breaststroker over 200 meters. That reign ended Saturday night.

Kate Douglass went 2:19.30 to take down Soni’s long-held marks Saturday at the TYR Pro Swim Series in Knoxville.

Soni had gone 2:19.59, then a world record, in the final of the Olympics in London in 2012. That had stood as the American record. Soni also held one of the few remaining super-suited U.S. Open records from three years prior, having gone 2:20.38 in 2009.

Douglass bested both.

Douglass’s splits:

1 Kate Douglass    22 New York Athleti  2:23.04    2:19.30A       
    r:+0.66  32.01      1:07.05 (35.04)
        1:42.97 (35.92)     2:19.30 (36.33)

That leaves just seven American records in LCM predating 2010’s ban of super suits – Aaron Peirsol in the 200 backstroke, Michael Phelps in three events (200 free, 200 fly, 400 IM), Larsen Jensen in the 400 free, Katie Hoff in the 400 IM and Ariana Kukors in the 200 IM. Eight U.S. Open marks remain.

Douglass also erased Annie Lazor’s Pro Swim Series record of 2:20.77 from 2019 and buzzed within two seconds of the world record set by Russian Evgeniia Chikunova in April 2023.

The swim is Douglass’s first LCM American record. Last summer, she set the U.S. Open record in the 200 IM by going 2:07.09. (She nearly saw that erased in the very next event Saturday, Summer McIntosh of Canada coming within .07 of it in winning in 2:07.16.)

Douglass owns the American record in the SCM 200 IM and on three relays, plus three individual and five relay records (each are both American and U.S. Open) in short-course yards. The 22-year-old is a 17-time NCAA champion at Virginia who won bronze in the 200 IM in Tokyo and gold in the event, plus silver in the 200 breast, at the last World Championships.

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