Katie Ledecky Cruises in 1500 Free Heats After Rare Loss in 400

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Katie Ledecky, in a class of her own Photo Courtesy: Becca Wyant

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FINA World Swimming Championships: (Katie Ledecky in 1500)

Gwangju 2019

Day 2 Heats

USA’s Katie Ledecky cruised through the women’s 1500 free heats on Monday morning at the 2019 FINA World Swimming Championships in Gwangju. Ledecky swam a 15:48.90, which is well off her best time and world record of 15:20.48. There was intrigued around how Ledecky was swimming this morning after taking an uncharacteristic silver in the 400 free last night. Ledecky is aiming for a fourth straight World title in the 1500 free as the final will take place on Tuesday night in Gwangju.

Italy’s Simona Quadarella (15:51.59) is the second seed as she made her debut in the pool this week. She did not swim the 400 free on Sunday to presumably conserve energy for the 1500. Now that the women’s 1500 is an Olympic event, distance swimmers will likely drop the 400 from their program to focus on the 800 and 1500. Germany’s Sarah Kohler (15:54.08) placed third in the heats as she also dropped the 400 from her program.

Hungary’s Ajna Kesely, who had a great race in the 400 last night just missing out on a medal, is fourth at 15:54.48. The successful junior swimmer has translated that junior success to the senior level and could be in line to win a medal tomorrow night in the 1500.

USA’s Ashley Twichell, who secured a spot on the US Olympic Team next summer in the 10K, is the fifth seed at 15:56.22. Twichell was sixth in the 10K earlier in the competition as she has stayed to swim the pool 1500 this week.

Australia’s Kiah Melverton (15:59.92) was the sixth swimmer to break 16:00 in the heats as China’s Wang Jianjiahe (16:00.17) and Australia’s Maddy Gough (16:02.75) also got into the final.

1 LEDECKY Katie United States of America USA 15:48.90
2 QUADARELLA Simona Italy ITA 15:51.59
3 KOHLER Sarah Germany GER 15:54.08
4 KESELY Ajna Hungary HUN 15:54.48
5 TWICHELL Ashley United States of America USA 15:56.22
6 MELVERTON Kiah Australia AUS 15:59.92
7 WANG Jianjiahe People's Republic of China CHN 16:00.17
8 GOUGH Maddy Australia AUS 16:02.75