American swimming legend Katie Ledecky can blame Canada for this one.
That’s because it was Canadian Summer McIntosh who defeated Ledecky in the 800-meter freestyle on Thursday on the first night of the Southern Zone South Sectional Championships in Orlando, Florida, making it the first time in 13 years that the three-time defending Olympic champion had lost in an 800 freestyle.
McIntosh finished the event with a speedy 8:11.39, easily defeating Ledecky’s second-place time of 8:17.12.
The 17-year-old swimming sensation set a new Canadian record with her personal-best time Thursday.
But toppling one of the sport’s biggest names is a feat all on its own, as the last time that Ledecky lost an 800-meter freestyle final came when she was 13 years old in 2010 at the Potomac Vally Championships in Maryland, SwimSwam reported.
Ledecky also came in second in an 800-meter free heat at the 2019 World Championships, but then went on to take home gold in the finals.
Ledecky has already cemented her place in American swimming history as well as in the sport itself.
She first set the record in the 800-meter freestyle in 2013 and has topped it four times since then, with Ledecky setting the current 8:04.79 record at the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
Ledecky had held the top-30 fastest times ever in the event, but after Thursday, she now holds the best 16 with McIntosh holding the 17th spot.
Ledecky has won 46 medals — 36 golds, nine silvers, and one bronze — across major international competitions which include the Summer Olympics, World Championships, and Pan Pacific Championships.