ZUMO Performance of the Week: Lilly King Notches PB In 200 Breast In Indy

lilly king
Lilly King recorded a personal best in the 200 breast at the 2019 FINA Champions Series in Indianapolis; Photo Courtesy: Peter H. Bick

This week’s ZUMO Performance of the Week goes to Lilly King, who recorded a personal best time in the 200 breast at the 2019 FINA Champions Series in Indianapolis this week.

King made her first Champions Series appearance in Indianapolis with a big statement swim in the 200 breast, going head to head with rival Yulia Efimova on the first night of the meet. It was the first time the two have raced since the 2017 World Championships, and both rose to the occasion. King was out fast through the first 100, leading the field before Efimova reeled her in over the third 50.

Typically a strong back-half swimmer, Efimova looked like she was going to take control of the race heading into the final 50. But King refused to give up, and pushed her tempo off the third turn to hang with Efimova over the last 50 before surging in the final meters to take the win by two-tenths. Check out the race video below:

King’s 2:21.39 was a personal best by about half a second and was the first time that King has beat Efimova head to head in a 200 breast in her career. That moves her up to #2 in the world behind teammate Annie Lazor and makes her the fastest woman heading into World Championships this summer (Lazor is on the Pan American Games team based on last summer’s qualifying procedures).

“I always love coming to race at the Nat. I know I have a lot of kids watching me like I did when I was younger when there were big meets here, too,” King said after the race, saying the crowd and pool was a huge factor in her swim.

“It’s really easy to swim fast at home because you don’t have to travel,” King said. “I know this pool and the walls and the blocks like the back of my hand so it makes it easier to swim faster.”

The Indiana pro also credited Lazor for pushing her in training, and said her that her experience in these types of international competitions is only going to help her be prepared for when she gets to Worlds this summer (you can see the entire post-race interview with King here).

Congratulations to Lilly King on earning ZUMO’s Performance of the Week!


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