TOKYO — American swimmer Katie Ledecky is once again the Olympic champion at the 800-meter freestyle.
She touched the wall first at 8:12.57, besting her Australian rival Ariarne Titmus who cruised to silver at 8:13.83. Italy’s Simona Quadarella took the bronze. American Katie Grimes was fourth.
It was Ledecky’s second individual gold at the Tokyo Olympics, after her win in the 1,500-meter freestyle.
And it was another showdown between Ledecky and Titmus.
“I’m really, really thrilled to have that kind of competition and something that fuels me. And I know it fuels her as well,” Ledecky said of the rivalry.
She won silver behind Titmus in the 400-meter freestyle. Titmus also won gold in the 200-meter freestyle, a race in which Ledecky placed fifth.
“I knew she was just going to be lurking there the whole time,” Ledecky said after the race today. “And I knew I had to have a little gap because if we were neck and neck going in the last 100, I know she has that finish.”
Ledecky won Olympic gold in the 800-meter freestyle in London in 2012 and Rio de Janeiro in 2016.
“It’s tough to win one gold, and to do it three times in a row in that event is amazing.”
This isn’t the end for Ledecky. She plans to try to compete at the Paris Olympics in 2024 — “and maybe beyond as well.”