Kazan - Katie Ledecky of the United States admitted
she was shocked after breaking her own 1 500m freestyle record in the heats of
the world swimming championships in Kazan on Monday.
The 18-year-old, who also holds the 400m
and 800m records, clocked 15min 27.71 seconds to better the 15:28.36 seconds
she swam at the Pan-Pacific Games in August last year.
"My coach told me to swim the first
900m easy, build over the next 300, then the final 300 was my choice and to be
honest, it felt pretty easy," said Ledecky, who came within a second of
her 400m record on Sunday.
"I wasn't kicking much and I think
breaking the world record is testament to the hard work I have put in and the
shape I am in right now.
"I am pretty shocked that I was able
to do that."
Ledecky only recently finished high school
in Maryland, but this is the eighth time the teenager has set a world record in
her fledgling career.
It is the fourth time the defending
champion has broken the 1 500m record alone having first achieved the feat in
Barcelona two years ago on her way to winning the world title.
This is the second world record to fall in
Kazan after Sweden's Sarah Sjostrom feat in the women's 100m butterfly heats on
Also in Monday's heats, Chinese
medal-machine Sun Yang stayed on course to claim the second of the four golds
he wants in Kazan after cruising into Monday night's 200m freestyle semi-finals
as the fastest qualifier.
Sun defended his 400m freestyle title on
Sunday, but faces some stiff competition over the shorter distance.
Britain's James Guy, who took silver behind
Sun in the 400m final, was just 0.10 seconds behind Sun's time of 1min 46sec
Germany's world record-holder Paul
Biedermann and Australia's Cameron McEvoy are also medal contenders for Tuesday's
final at 0.39 seconds behind Sun's time.
Missy Franklin of the United States opened
her individual campaign as the world and Olympic 100m backstroke champion was
fifth fastest into Monday's semi-finals.
Hungary's 'Iron Lady', Katinka Hosszu, was
the fastest through in a national record of 58.78 seconds but will sit out the
evening's backstroke semis to defend her 200m individual medley world title.
She finished second to Australia's Emily
Seebohm in her heat having won gold to Seebohm's silver at the 2012 Olympics
and Barcelona's worlds in 2013.
After Australian medal hopes Mack Horton
and Christian Sprenger bombed in their respective heats and the men's team
failed to qualify for Sunday's 4x100m freestyle final, Mitchell Larkin was
fastest through to the evening's 100m backstroke semi-finals.
He clocked 52.50 seconds, an Oceania
record, just ahead of world and Olympic champion Matt Grevers.
"Yesterday was a bit of a wake-up call
for us," admitted Larkin.
"It's all about keeping up with our
females now," he said pointing to the Australian women's relay gold
There's a battle brewing in the women's
Russia's Yuliya Efimova was the fastest
through to Monday's semi-finals after her 16-month ban for using steroids
expired in February.
Lithuania's defending Olympic and world
champion Ruta Meilutyte, China's Shi Jinglin, Jessica Hardy of the USA and
Japan's Kanako Watanabe all posted fast times.
Monday night's 100m breaststroke final pits
Britain's world-record holder Adam Peaty against South Africa's Olympic
champion Cameron van der Burgh and the pair have broken the championship record
three times in Kazan.