2012 Olympics, Women's 800m Freestyle Results: Katie Ledecky Earns Stunning Gold

A couple of the biggest stars in American swimming captured the spotlight at the London 2012 Olympics on Friday, as both Missy Franklin and Michael Phelps captured gold medals in impressive fashion. But perhaps the most impressive performance of them all came from 15-year-old Katie Ledecky.

Ledecky, who is the youngest member of the USA swimming team, was considered a slight underdog to make the Olympic team at U.S. trials. Not only did she make the team, but she easily put away the field in the women's 800-meter freestyle, defeating Mireia Belmonte Garcia by over four seconds, as well as defending champion and home crowd favorite Rebecca Adlington by nearly six seconds.

For the entire race, Ledecky swam at world record pace, coming up just short of Adlington's record in the final meters. Ledecky got to watch Franklin and Phelps win their races before she got into the water, and she claimed that they gave her the motivation to be her best on Friday.

"Michael's and Missy's races really got me pumped,'' Ledecky said. "I really wanted to see what i could do to represent the U.S.''

For more on the Olympics, check out SB Nation's London 2012 Olympics Hub. For more on Olympic swimming, follow the 2012 Olympic swimming section.

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