Ledecky wins 200m freestyle at US Olympic trials with best events to come

It was a night for household names at the U.S. Olympic swimming trials. Backstroker Ryan Murphy is heading to his third Olympic Games. This includes breaststroke queen Lilly King. And the most prominent name of them all, Katie Ledecky, locked up a second individual race in Paris. Then there’s Katie Grimes, who will swim both indoors and outdoors at this year’s Summer Games.

In a hectic session with five finals, Ledecky made it two-for-two in Indy by finishing first in the 200-meter freestyle on Monday. Having already won the 400m freestyle on the opening night of the trials, Ledecky showed her speed in the final lap and took the win in 1 minute and 55.22 seconds.

Still to come are Ledecky’s two best events: the 800-meter and 1,500-meter freestyle.

She will be joined in Paris by Claire Weinstein, second in the 200 meters free time at 1:56.18. Paige Madden and Erin Gemmell are also guaranteed relay spots in the 4x200m free relay after finishing third and fourth respectively, while the next two – Anna Peplowski and Alex Shackell – are also in the mix for relay spots.

Murphy won the men’s 100m backstroke and continues an excellent run dating back to his breakthrough in Rio de Janeiro in 2016. The 28-year-old Floridian touched the ball in 52.22 seconds and has a chance to add to his already impressive resume, which includes four golds, one silver and one bronze.

“I’ll appreciate my career a little more when I’m done swimming,” Murphy said. “Then I can zoom out. Now I am really zoomed in on everything I do every day.”

Murphy is excited for these Olympics after settling for silver and bronze in his individual races in Tokyo. “There is absolutely no shortage of motivation on my end,” he said. “I want to win every time I touch the water.”

The 27-year-old King thrilled her home state fans at Lucas Oil Stadium by taking the 100-meter breaststroke in 1:05.43. She then ran across the deck, hugged family members and enjoyed the cheers in the cavernous home of the NFL’s Indianapolis Colts.

“I had a very special moment tonight,” she said. “I enjoyed it a little more than in the past.”

King has said her third Olympics will be her last. She has already won two golds, two silvers and one bronze in her stellar Olympic career.

“I’ve done everything I ever wanted to do,” King said.

Emma Weber finished second in 1:06.10, 0.27 behind Tokyo gold medalist Lydia Jacoby, meaning the Alaska native will not get a chance to defend her title in Paris.

“My heart absolutely breaks for her,” King said. ‘That’s how this meeting is going. It can make or break a career in a minute.”

Grimes has already secured a spot in open water, which will be held in the Seine. She added a pool spot with a victory in the women’s 400-meter individual medley. Grimes built a big lead through the butterfly and backstroke legs, handing the top spot to Emma Weyant in the breaststroke, but rallied in the freestyle to take the guaranteed spot for Paris in 4:35.00.

In Tokyo, Grimes was the youngest member of the entire U.S. Olympic team at 15. She is now a veteran.