LumaLanes Split Time Analysis: 400 SCM Freestyle World Record

Katie Hoff showed remarkable closing speed in her race, as she was the only swimmer of the four to negative split her race- 1:58.57, 1:58.50.

Split Time for the 400 Short Course Meters Freestyle is sponsored by LumaLanes.

Today we look at the 400 Short Course Meters Freestyle for women by analyzing the splits for Ariane Titmus’ World Record swim from World Champs in 2018 and comparing the race data to Wang Jianjiahe’s former World Record swim from the 2018 World Cup stop #4 in Budapest, Katie Ledecky’s new American Record swim from the ISL meet in Indianapolis on October 6, and Katie Hoff’s former American Record swim from World Champs in 2010.

  • 56.08; 1:55.37; 2:54.94; 3:53.92 Ariarne Titmus WR – December 2018
  • 56.31; 1:55.58; 2:55.17; 3:53.97 Wang Jianjiahe WR – October 2018
  • 56.33; 1:55.24; 2:55.04; 3:54.06 Katie Ledecky – October 2019
  • 58.03; 1:58.57; 2:58.28;  3:57.07 Kathryn Hoff – December 2010


A hypothetical race between Titmus, Wang, and Ledecky would be quite an exciting one, as all three athletes were very similar in their pacing throughout the 400. Titmus had the slight advantage over Wang and Ledecky at the 100 mark, though only by .23 seconds and .25 seconds, respectively. By the 200 mark, Ledecky would take a lead of .13 seconds over Titmus, with Wang another .21 seconds back. At 300, Titmus barely regains the lead, leading Ledecky by only .10 seconds and Wang .23 seconds. In holding off a charge by Wang on the final 100, Titmus wins by a mere .05 seconds over Wang, with Ledecky splashing home another .09 seconds behind for third. A real battle royal, Titmus claims the world mark while Wang and Ledecky each establish their respective national standards, the latter by 3.01 seconds.

  • Titmus’ 100 Splits: 56.08, 59.29, 59.57, 58.98
  • Wang’s 100 Splits: 56.31, 59.27, 59.59, 58.80
  • Ledecky’s 100 Splits: 56.33, 58.91, 59.80, 59.02
  • Hoff’s 100 Splits: 58.03, 1:00.54, 59.71, 58.79

By breaking down each of the races into their respective 100 split times as opposed to the running clock time, we can see the apparent differences between how each of these four women swam their races. Titmus takes the crown for fastest opening 100 by .23 seconds, but Ledecky earns the honors on the second 100 with a margin of .36 seconds. The third hundred is seemingly what separates the two women who have eclipsed the 3:54 barrier from the rest: Titmus’ third 100 meters, while only .02 seconds faster than Wang’s, was .33 seconds ahead of Ledecky, erasing all of her deficit. The fastest final 100 actually belongs to Hoff, who, in the first year after the end of the suit era, produced her fastest 100 split (excluding the first) in the final 100 meters at 58.79. While she was only .01 seconds ahead of Wang, Hoff showed remarkable closing speed in her race, as she was the only swimmer of the four to negative split her race- 1:58.57, 1:58.50.

Ledecky did not swim for the DC Trident at the ISL stop in Naples, but she will surely be at another meet during the season and potentially, based on how her team finishes the inaugural season, at the championship meet in Las Vegas in December. Considering she is still fairly new to the Short Course Meters scene, Ledecky is still learning the aspects of her race such as stroke tempo and kickouts. It is feasible then, to believe that she can break the World Record in this race before her career ends.

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