Katie Ledecky ties Michael Phelps' record at World Championships

The U.S. swimmer's win in the 1,500-meter freestyle tied the record, but she could break the record when swims again this weekend.
Posted at 10:49 AM, Jul 26, 2023

Olympic and World Champion swimmer Katie Ledecky has added another accolade to her stunning career.

With her victory Tuesday in the 1,500-meter freestyle event at the World Aquatic Championships in Fukuoka, Japan, Ledecky earned her 15th individual gold at worlds — tying the record for most individual gold medals at worlds, which she now co-holds with another superstar in the sport, Michael Phelps.

Ledecky made the whole record-setting event look so smooth and simple. As she touched the wall to complete the swim, her nearest competitor was more than 17 seconds behind.

It's not the first time Ledecky has made history with the 1,500-meter freestyle event. In the delayed 2020 Summer Olympics held in July 2021, Ledecky brought home the gold medal in the same event, a first-time event during those Games.

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A little more than three years from that historic day, Ledecky swam into the record books with another winning 1,500-meter freestyle swim.

The individual gold medal record held by Ledecky and Phelps for the World Aquatics Championships stands at 15. But that record could fall on Saturday, when Ledecky swims in the 800-meter individual freestyle event.

Ledecky earned her first medal at the 2023 worlds on Sunday with a silver medal performance in the 400-meter freestyle event. Following her second-place finish, Ledecky reached out to her fans on Twitter to share her reaction to her silver medal and excitement for the 1,500-meter event.

"Day 1 ✅ 400 free in the books, happy with my swim! Always an honor to pick up a medal for @USASwimming 🇺🇸🥈 especially in such a fast 400 final," she wrote. "We're just getting started, excited to get going on some distance with the 1500 up next here 😎."

This story was originally published by Marie Rossiter at