| Event type

800 metres Freestyle, Women

Date14 – 16 August 2008
LocationBeijing Guojia Youyong Zhongxin, Beijing Aolinpike Gongyuan, Beijing
Participants35 from 29 countries

American Kate Ziegler had won the world titles at both the 800 freestyle and non-Olympic 1500 freestyle at the two world championships held between the Athens and Beijing Olympics. At Beijing however she was eliminated in the heats after recording only the tenth fastest time.

Becky Adlington of Great Britain had set the world’s leading time and had won the World Short Course Championship earlier in the year but there still doubts about her ability to perform at the highest championship following her disappointing results at the 2007 World Championships. These doubts were dispelled when she won the Olympic 400 freestyle title a few days earlier and she was installed as overwhelming favourite to win the 800 as well. Adlington did not disappoint and the race gradually turned into one between the Briton and Janet Evans’ world record which had stood since 1989. The clock stopped at 8:14.10 which was two seconds under the 20 year old record. Adlington was not yet born when Evans had set the record.

Behind her Alessia Filippi was a distant second with Denmark’s Lotte Friis winning a close battle for bronze. Friis turned the tables on Adlington to become world champion in 2009 but the Briton regained supremacy in 2011.

1Becky AdlingtonGBR8:18.06 (1 h4)8:14.10 (1)Gold
2Alessia FilippiITA8:21.95 (1 h5)8:20.23 (2)Silver
3Lotte FriisDEN8:21.74 (2 h4)8:23.03 (3)Bronze
4Camelia PotecROU8:19.70 (1 h3)8:23.11 (4)
5Li XuanxuCHN8:24.37 (2 h3)8:26.34 (5)
6Kylie PalmerAUS8:22.81 (3 h4)8:26.39 (6)
7Yelena SokolovaRUS8:23.07 (2 h5)8:29.79 (7)
8Cassie PattenGBR8:25.91 (3 h5)8:32.35 (8)
9Wendy TrottRSA8:26.21 (4 h4)
10Kate ZieglerUSA8:26.98 (4 h5)
11Katie HoffUSA8:27.78 (3 h3)
12Coralie BalmyFRA8:28.34 (5 h5)
13Flavia RigamontiSUI8:28.67 (4 h3)
14Andreína PintoVEN8:30.30 (5 h3)
15You MeihongCHN8:31.11 (5 h4)
16Erika VillaécijaESP8:32.27 (6 h5)
17Melissa GormanAUS8:32.34 (7 h5)
18Susana EscobarMEX8:33.51 (1 h2)
19Sophie HuberFRA8:33.76 (8 h5)
20Kristel KöbrichCHI8:34.25 (2 h2)
21Maiko FujinoJPN8:35.60 (6 h3)
22Jördis SteineggerAUT8:36.40 (3 h2)
23Tanya HunksCAN8:38.05 (7 h3)
24Gabriella FagundezSWE8:39.06 (4 h2)
25Jaana EhmckeGER8:39.51 (6 h4)
26Réka NagyHUN8:40.38 (5 h2)
27Ai ShibataJPN8:41.63 (7 h4)
28Elvira EfstathiouGRE8:41.65 (8 h4)
29Stephanie AuHKG8:41.66 (1 h1)
30Lynette LimSGP8:45.56 (6 h2)
31Cecilia BiagioliARG8:50.18 (7 h2)
32Golda MarcusESA8:51.21 (2 h1)
33Eva LehtonenFIN8:53.50 (3 h1)
34Khoo Cai LinMAS9:04.86 (8 h2)
35Karolina SzczepaniakPOL9:08.87 (4 h1)
DNSFederica PellegriniITA– (DNS h3)

Round One (14 August 2008)

Fastest eight swimmers advanced to final

Heat One (19:02)

14Stephanie AuHKG8:41.660.78
25Golda MarcusESA8:51.210.75
33Eva LehtonenFIN8:53.500.68
46Karolina SzczepaniakPOL9:08.870.71

Heat Two (19:13)

14Susana EscobarMEX8:33.510.78
25Kristel KöbrichCHI8:34.250.87
31Jördis SteineggerAUT8:36.400.90
43Gabriella FagundezSWE8:39.060.94
56Réka NagyHUN8:40.380.91
68Lynette LimSGP8:45.560.63
72Cecilia BiagioliARG8:50.180.86
87Khoo Cai LinMAS9:04.860.71

Heat Three (19:24)

15Camelia PotecROU8:19.700.90Q
26Li XuanxuCHN8:24.370.82Q
34Katie HoffUSA8:27.780.79
43Flavia RigamontiSUI8:28.670.88
58Andreína PintoVEN8:30.300.75
61Maiko FujinoJPN8:35.600.83
77Tanya HunksCAN8:38.050.82
DNS2Federica PellegriniITA

Heat Four (19:35)

14Becky AdlingtonGBR8:18.060.83QOR
22Lotte FriisDEN8:21.740.81Q
33Kylie PalmerAUS8:22.810.80Q
41Wendy TrottRSA8:26.210.82
57You MeihongCHN8:31.110.85
66Jaana EhmckeGER8:39.510.88
75Ai ShibataJPN8:41.630.90
88Elvira EfstathiouGRE8:41.650.77

Heat Five (19:46)

15Alessia FilippiITA8:21.950.90Q
21Yelena SokolovaRUS8:23.070.84Q
37Cassie PattenGBR8:25.910.83Q
44Kate ZieglerUSA8:26.980.75
56Coralie BalmyFRA8:28.340.85
63Erika VillaécijaESP8:32.270.84
78Melissa GormanAUS8:32.340.82
82Sophie HuberFRA8:33.760.92

Final (16 August 2008 — 10:16)

14Becky AdlingtonGBR8:14.100.84WR
26Alessia FilippiITA8:20.230.88
33Lotte FriisDEN8:23.030.82
45Camelia PotecROU8:23.110.91
51Li XuanxuCHN8:26.340.84
62Kylie PalmerAUS8:26.390.73
77Yelena SokolovaRUS8:29.790.83
88Cassie PattenGBR8:32.350.84