Buoyed By Katie Ledecky, United States (7:43.03) Remains Caretaker Of 800 Free Relay

Katie Ledecky - no peeping ... what next for Team USA? - by Patrick B. Kraemer

The 800 freestyle relay has been contested at only six Olympiads, the United States winning five, including in Rio behind the grouping of Allison Schmitt, Leah Smith, Maya DiRado and Katie Ledecky.

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There was so much talk pre meet about the USA obliterating the WR in this one. Tonight clearly demonstrated the reality that WRs rarely progress exactly according to script and never as an inevitability. One can have all the requisite component parts present but having them all firing or performing at the requisite level is far rarer.

What we saw competence and stability from the front three and Ledecky sealing the deal rather than a Schmitt/Smith or Franklin “smoking it” with Ledecky taking it into the stratosphere.

This may be controversial to some but do not be surprised if we see CAN on the 2nd step of the podium next year given the potential trajectories of Oleksiak, Ruck & McLean. AUS may not roll over without a fight but they’re needing to locate a replacement for Barratt fairly quickly !


The collapse of Franklin is indeed one of the swimming stories if not THE swimming story in the past month.

I really don’t understand how one extra year of full time training has successfully made her significantly slower across all events.

It doesn’t seem she has had any existential personal crisis a la Allison Schmitt circa 2013.
She has also been injury free.
She has been living and training at altitude.
She has had fabulous commercial activities guaranteeing good income.

Maybe the type of her current training (technique, conditioning) doesn’t suit her post-puberty body shape?

Anyway, it is sad not to see her on the podium so far, and I am not too optimistic she’ll medal in 200 back either.

Eugene Chc

aswimfan, looks like Hosszu and Dirado top favorites in 200 back.

one of the best options for Missy would return to Teri, but apparently their parting was not the best.

if Schmitz trained so as before then all it would be not bad, but he decided to radically change.


Based on current form and momentum, It’s Hosszu vs. Dirado in 200 back, with perhaps Hocking for bronze.

Eugene Chc

This will be great for Dirado if she wins individual gold in her last race.


Imagine if Dirado wins 200 back gold, she would have won a complete set of Olympics individual medals.


The only way i can see Maya winning the 200 backstroke is due to Hosszu “fatiguing” as Nicole would so gracefully put it.

She has had a heavy program and the signs of being drained are slowly creeping forward. Same goes for Hagino.

Phelps is going to smash that 200 IM tomorrow.


I really hope Katie swims the anchor on the 4×100 relay. She deserves it. That will take her to 6 Medals. Wow


Yeah, I think it’s Hosszu’s race to lose. DiRado has been excellent in Rio but hardly obliterating her PBs. I think she can be a medal factor but that would be contingent on the minor medals being decided in the 2.06s.

What may be happening on Planet Seebohm is anyone’s guess. Hocking ….. will depend on how she handles the pressure. Whilst she was silver medallist in this event at both 2011 & 2013 Worlds; she went into London as clear 2nd money and failed to make the final after finalling in her lesser event (100)


Flyguy, I was just thinking that. If Manuel or Weitzel don’t put themselves forward by producing tonight, and if Ledecky has enough left in the tank, I think it makes sense to put her in. The U.S. will need a cushion against Campbell and Ledecky is the best option to defend that situation.


The road has definitely become easier for Hosszu with others under performing. Hard to see past her unless Seebohm can find her form.


Ger, I’d reassess that final sentence to include CAN, probably ahead of AUS.

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