MELBOURNE (Reuters) – Australian Olympic champion swimmer Ariarne Titmus paid tribute to Katie Ledecky after breaking the American’s world record within the 400 metres freestyle at nationwide championships in Adelaide.
Titmus, 21, gained the Australian title with a swim of three minutes, 56.40 seconds on Sunday, shaving 0.06 seconds off Ledecky’s earlier mark of three:56:46 set on the Rio Olympics.
Titmus, whose rivalry with Ledecky lit up the Tokyo Olympics final yr, mentioned she nonetheless noticed the American as the best feminine swimmer of all time.
“I am unable to put myself up subsequent to her. What she has achieved for feminine swimming has been insane. She’s been at this degree for 10 years,” Titmus advised Australian media.
“To be within the dialog along with her, I really feel fully honoured.
“I hope now that is going to hold the battle going – give her some drive, hopefully, we are able to see how a lot quicker we are able to hold going.”
World champion Titmus edged Ledecky by lower than a second for the 400 gold medal at Tokyo however the American turned the tables to win the 800, ending 1.26 seconds faster than runner-up Titmus.
Fast turning into one in all Australia’s best swimmers, Titmus mentioned she felt the world record was there for the taking however didn’t concentrate on it in Adelaide.
“I assumed that if I went on the market and did the most effective race I might with how I’m feeling, the world record was positively inside my attain,” mentioned Titmus, who additionally gained the 200 freestyle gold at Tokyo.
“I strive not to give it some thought. I feel, if you concentrate on it, your race plan comes undone.”
Titmus gained the nationwide 200 freestyle title on Friday, coming inside 0.33 seconds of Federica Pellegrini’s long-standing world record (1:52.98).
She is skipping the world championships in Budapest subsequent month to concentrate on the July-August Commonwealth Games in Birmingham.
(Reporting by Ian Ransom in Melbourne; Editing by Peter Rutherford)