Katie Ledecky Pops 1:54.40 200 Free in Mission Viejo to Tie US Open Record; Dressel Back-Halfs to Beat Seliskar

katie-ledecky-
Katie Ledecky - Stanford - Photo Courtesy: Peter H. Bick

Katie Ledecky, the reigning Olympic champ in the 200 freestyle, swam a lifetime season best of 1:54.40 in the 200 freestyle on Friday morning at the TYR Pro Swim Series in Mission Viejo, California as she broke her own meet record of 1:54.43 from 2016. Ledecky’s time is the top time in the world for 2021 as she gears up for a full event line-up for the Olympic Games. USA Swimming is using this meet in California as a test event for the athletes to get used to swimming finals in the morning – much like how the Olympics will run morning finals this summer.

The time for Ledecky also ties the US Open record that Allison Schmitt set at the 2012 Trials on her way to setting the current American record at the London Games.

Behind Ledecky, Schmitt won the battle for second at 1:58.04 ahead of Cal grad Katie McLaughlin (1:58.14) and Madisyn Cox (1:58.14). The American women have won the last two Olympic gold medals in the 4×200 free relay and should have a formidable team led by Ledecky to make it three straight this summer.

In the men’s race, sprinter Caeleb Dressel swam an un-characteristic back halfed 200 free to beat the field with a 1:47.57, running down Andrew Seliskar (1:47.69) on the final 50. Dressel turned fifth at the 100 (52.7), behind Seliskar (51.9) and split a 27.1 on the third 50 to flip second (1:19.9) behind 2018 national champ Seliskar (1:19.6).

Dressel, who is more known for his sprint seed, comes from a distance background at the University of Florida and at the Bolles School (he was a juniors meet record holder in the 200 free), came home in a 27.6 to run down Seliskar. Fellow Florida post grad Khader Baqlah was third at 1:47.93 after coming home in a 27.4. Baqlah represents Jordan internationally.

Batur Unlu, who finished his freshman year at Georgia Tech, was fourth at 1:48.71 ahead of Michigan’s Patrick Callan (1:48.93).

The American men certainly had to have taken note of Russia’s Olympic Trials earlier this week as they had four men under 1:46 and look to be a gold medal favorite for Tokyo this summer.

 Event 3  Women 200 LC Meter Freestyle
=========================================================================
        World: W 1:52.98  7/29/2009 Federica Pellegrini, ITA
     American: A 1:53.61  7/31/2012 Allison Schmitt, USA Olympic Team
    U.S. Open: O 1:54.40  6/25/2012 Allison Schmitt, North Baltimore
     Jr World: J 1:55.43  7/24/2019 Junxuan Yang, CHN
     Pro Swim: P 1:54.43  2016      Katie Ledecky
                 2:00.24  W-II Oly Trials Wave II
                 2:01.69  W-I Oly Trials Wave I
    Name            Age Team              Prelims     Finals       Points 
=========================================================================
                            === A - Final ===                            
 
  1 Katie Ledecky    24 Nation's Capital  1:55.40    1:54.40O       
    r:+0.64  27.45        56.01 (28.56)
        1:25.34 (29.33)     1:54.40 (29.06)
  2 Allison Schmitt  30 Sun Devil Swimmi  1:58.20    1:58.04        
    r:+0.69  27.91        57.08 (29.17)
        1:27.18 (30.10)     1:58.04 (30.86)
  3 Katie McLaughli  23 California Aquat  1:58.30    1:58.14        
    r:+0.70  27.84        57.03 (29.19)
        1:27.37 (30.34)     1:58.14 (30.77)
  3 Madisyn Cox      25 Longhorn Aquatic  1:58.31    1:58.14        
    r:+0.73  28.00        57.55 (29.55)
        1:27.68 (30.13)     1:58.14 (30.46)
  5 Abbey Weitzeil   24 California Aquat  1:58.65    1:58.69        
    r:+0.64  27.40        57.39 (29.99)
        1:27.75 (30.36)     1:58.69 (30.94)
  6 Emma Nordin      21 Unattached-AZ     1:58.51    1:58.98        
    r:+0.69  28.23        57.84 (29.61)
        1:28.68 (30.84)     1:58.98 (30.30)
  7 *Joanna Evans    23 Longhorn Aquatic  1:58.43    1:59.41        
    r:+0.68  28.16        57.87 (29.71)
        1:28.87 (31.00)     1:59.41 (30.54)
  8 Hali Flickinger  26 Sun Devil Swimmi  1:58.49    1:59.96        
    r:+0.67  28.40        58.43 (30.03)
        1:29.29 (30.86)     1:59.96 (30.67)
 Event 4  Men 200 LC Meter Freestyle
=========================================================================
        World: W 1:42.00  7/28/2009 Paul Biedermann, GER
     American: A 1:42.96  8/12/2008 Michael Phelps, USA
    U.S. Open: O 1:44.10  7/1/2008  Michael Phelps, Club Wolverine
     Jr World: J 1:46.13  12/18/2018Elijah Winnington, AUS
     Pro Swim: P 1:44.82  2016      Sun Yang
                 1:49.65  W-II Oly Trials Wave II
                 1:50.79  W-I Oly Trials Wave I
    Name            Age Team              Prelims     Finals       Points 
=========================================================================
                            === A - Final ===                            
 
  1 Caeleb Dressel   24 Gator Swim Club-  1:48.69    1:47.57        
    r:+0.63  24.83        52.76 (27.93)
        1:19.92 (27.16)     1:47.57 (27.65)
  2 Andrew Seliskar  24 California Aquat  1:48.38    1:47.69        
    r:+0.63  24.99        51.92 (26.93)
        1:19.63 (27.71)     1:47.69 (28.06)
  3 *Khader Baqlah   22 Gator Swim Club-  1:47.91    1:47.93        
    r:+0.66  25.57        52.56 (26.99)
        1:20.44 (27.88)     1:47.93 (27.49)
  4 *Batur Unlu      18 Una MAAC-GA       1:47.92    1:48.71        
    r:+0.67  25.36        52.99 (27.63)
        1:21.07 (28.08)     1:48.71 (27.64)
  5 Patrick Callan   21 Una CW-MI         1:48.73    1:48.93        
    r:+0.64  25.29        52.41 (27.12)
        1:20.29 (27.88)     1:48.93 (28.64)
  6 Drew Loy         23 Gator Swim Club-  1:48.98    1:49.08        
    r:+0.65  24.98        52.41 (27.43)
        1:20.44 (28.03)     1:49.08 (28.64)
  7 Zach Apple       23 Mission Viejo Na  1:49.58    1:49.75        
    r:+0.63  25.30        52.77 (27.47)
        1:20.69 (27.92)     1:49.75 (29.06)
  8 Zane Grothe      28 Boulder City Hen  1:49.11    1:53.78        
    r:+0.69  26.28        54.72 (28.44)
        1:24.44 (29.72)     1:53.78 (29.34)

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