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Katie Ledecky dominates 800m freestyle at U.S. swimming trials

Katie Ledecky competes in the 800-meter freestyle finals on Day One of the Phillips 66 International Team Trials at the Greensboro Aquatic Center on April 26, 2022 in Greensboro, North Carolina. (Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images)

Katie Ledecky put on a show Tuesday night, clocking her fastest time in the 800-meter freestyle since 2018 on the first day of the five-day U.S. swimming trials in Greensboro, N.C.

Touching the wall in 8 minutes, 9.27 seconds, Ledecky posted the sixth-fastest time ever. She now owns the 26 fastest times in history in the event.

“I’m really happy with that,” Ledecky said. “I felt coming in like I could possibly go under 8:10, and so to say that on the scoreboard was really exciting and the fastest I’ve been in a couple of years. Can’t complain, really happy with that.”

Results from the international team trials will determine the swimmers competing in June’s 2022 FINA World Championships in Budapest, Hungary. With her dominant victory, Ledecky punched her ticket to Hungary, joining Michael Phelps and Natalie Coughlin as the only American swimmers to have competed in at least five world championships.

Ledecky’s forceful showing in Greensboro comes on the heels of a successful Tokyo Olympics for the American star. She took home two gold medals at the Summer Games, including in the 800m freestyle.