Just Another Showstopper From Katie Ledecky: 4:01.95 Victory in 400 Freestyle

Katie Ledecky and Lotte Friis take in the enormity of their 1500m battle at Barcelona 2013 world titles [Photo: Patrick B. Kraemer]

A 4:01.95 performance from Katie Ledecky was the latest superb effort from the sport’s distance queen.

Want to read more? Our Basic subscription package allows you to access
to all articles barring specific content for Premium and Business
members. Select which service best suits you. Thank you for your
support of independent journalism and quality coverage of world-class swimming.

Log In Register

A 4:01.95 performance from Katie Ledecky was the latest superb effort from the sport’s distance queen.



I questioned the wisdom of Phelps swimming 400, the answer was mostly it was for “race training”, but how would racing 400 help with his 100, especially now that he could not even get a second swim, finishing 17th in the prelims.
IMHO, he would have gotten more race training swimming 100 back today. Although I guess Phelps does not really need race training this year now that he’s not going to Worlds.

As for Friis, I really hope she can be back to 2013 Barcelona times, even if it’s only to make 800 and 1500 a somewhat interesting race.
The way Ledecky swim her events is sight to behold, no nonsense relentless swimming, but there’s no drama and already a sense of finality, if she is not breaking WR. So if other swimmers can at least keep up with Ledecky until the final lap (like what Friis did in Barcelona) it would add a little bit of drama.
Or has training with Bowman broken Friis? Btw, is Friis still training with Bowman?

It’s almost impossible to read anything from this grand prix series as the Americans team for worlds have been selected and everyone seem to be training through this meet.

Italian fan

@aswimfan: Yes, Friis is still training with Bowman at NBAC, even if the bad results of last year (and also this year so far..).
Regarding Phelps, he and Bowman have repeated in every interview that his training has changed a lot from last year: more yardage, i.e. more similar at the old way of training.
It’s clear that he 400 free in Mesa (but, considering Phelps attitudes, also the 100 fly) show that, also considering Phelps weakness due the new (old) way of training, Phelps is very far from a good shape.
We’ll see in the next months if the engagement of Phelps in training is true or a blah, blah with merely commercial aims (launch his new brand).


I’ll say this for Bowman, he may be a little too impressed with himself after coaching Phelps, and his approach to training may not be the best one for everybody, but he doesn’t lie. In interviews he always gives a realistic impression of Phelps’ training. He has only said that Michael is coming to (all) their practices with a positive attitude and doing more yardage than he’s done since 2008. But like you said, we’ll see…

Italian fan

@Danjohnrob: I am a swimming-fan and so, inevitably, a great supporter of Phelps who, between 2001 and 2009, has really done astonishing performances, even beyond medal’s account.
For instance, I remember like yesterday Worlds 2003 in Barcelona and Phelps performances: that WR in semifinals of 200 fly (no energy-saving then), or the WRs shattered in the IMS with the new TVline-graphic at his feet, or that lead-off in the 4×200 free in which young Phelps stunned the great Hackett in the last 50 metres, already showing a bit of that great last-turn underwater that in Melbourne2007 would have shocked everybody.
I remember also interviews from Phelps and Bowman in the last 15 years, and:
1) Also last year, starting from Mesa2014, Bowman and Phelps repeated every meeting that Phelps trained with enthusiasm and a positive attitude, differently from 2009 to 2012.
Now Bowman tell us that last year Phelps swam just a few yardage in training (perhaps explained the enthusiasm..?)
2) Bowman in these days has said a lot more that “Michael is coming to practices with a positive attitude and doing more yardage than he’s done since 2008”.
Bowman has also said that in training Phelps has performed extremely well, and he was pleased that at 29 he was obtaining in some set the best times in his careers.
I remember also the enthusiastic tweet that Bowman wrote last season for Agnel, saying that Yannick had showed in training things he had never seen in his career, and another level in swimming (a bit unrespectful for Michael, I’d say).
Result: in 2014 Agnel, after a year of training with Bowman, performed badly, really the worst season in his career.
So, I expect the facts because, like the old romans, in this case I really think that “verba volant”…


@Italianfan, I don’t know what I said to motivate you to go on such a tirade. I’m also a huge Phelps fan who is skeptical of this “born again” Phelps 2.0. Perhaps we’re not seeing the same interviews, but from what I recall, Bowman was clear last summer that Phelps was not doing a lot of yardage. He seemed happy with his attitude and the quality of the training he DID do, but he didn’t know how well he would be able to do in competition. In current interviews he has stated Phelps is broken down from training but seems much more confident that they can attain some high goals in time for Rio because of what he sees in practice. That 400 free should have been an embarrassment to Phelps. I’m hoping he was just over-eager to show everybody he’s been working hard but just wasn’t as ready as he thought. Let’s face it, there are certain events you can’t fake, and the 400 free is one of them. I’m willing to give him the benefit of the doubt and hope for the best for now. As I said, we’ll see…

Rain Maker

I agree with @Danjohnrob….last year both Phelps and Bowman were clear on the fact that Michael was swimming about half the yards as his usual workouts. Yes they said he was coming to practice with a better attitude last year.

Also, just because Yannick didn’t swim well last year, doesn’t mean he didn’t swim some incredible sets in practice and Bowman claimed.

Leave a comment

Post a comment with your SwimVortex Account. Don't have a SwimVortex Account, Sign Up?

(*) Fields are required!