Ledecky wins fourth gold, sets second world record

Bethesda native wins 800 free; Towson resident Pelton takes fifth in 200 back

August 04, 2013|By Jordan Littman, The Baltimore Sun

Bethesda native Katie Ledecky came into Saturday's 800-meter freestyle final at the FINA World Championships with three gold medals and a 1,500 freestyle world record last week. On Saturday, she again was the swimmer to beat, and again, nobody was able to do it.

Ledecky won her final swim in Barcelona, Spain, by adding her second world record of the meet, topping Rebecca Adlington's former mark set in 2008 with a time of 8 minutes, 13.86 seconds.

"It's good to finish off on a great note," said Ledecky, who previously won the 400 free and 4x200 free relay. "I exceeded all expectations I had going into this meet and met all my goals, and I'm really happy right now."

Denmark's Lotte Friis, who challenged Ledecky in the 1,500 free last week and led for much of the 800 free, placed second at 8:16.32. Lauren Boyle of New Zealand was third with a time of 8:15.58.

"It's all about getting your hand on the wall first," Ledecky said. "My coach really wanted me to push the last 200, and I just stayed patient throughout the race like I did the other day [in the 1,500] and made my move where I had to."

Between the 2012 Olympics and this year's World Championships, Ledecky, 16, has never lost a world championship-level final. Her next world-championship swim will take place in 2015 in Kazan, Russia.

Competing in her second final of the meet, California sophomore and Towson resident Elizabeth Pelton finished fifth in the 200 backstroke in 2:08.98. She placed fourth in the 100 back last week.

Her future college teammate, Missy Franklin, won gold in the 200 back with a time of 2:04.76, 1.9 seconds faster than her closest competition.

It was her fifth victory of the meet. She's expected to swim in today's 4x100 medley relay final.

Johns Hopkins rising junior Ana Bogdanovski of Macedonia finished 46th in the women's 50 free (26.93) and incoming Hopkins freshman Pilar Shimizu of Guam finished 53rd (28.14). Neither advanced to the semifinals.

Today's final day of competition includes swims from Chase Kalisz (Fallston) and Tanja Kylliainen (Loch Raven) in the men's and women's 400 individual medley, respectively.



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