If you thought Katie Ledecky was dominant during the Rio Olympics, just wait until Tokyo.
The International Olympic Committee announced Friday that it has added three swimming events to the 2020 Olympic program: Men’s 800-meter freestyle, women’s 1,500-meter freestyle and a 4x100-meter medley mixed-gender relay.
For the first time in modern Olympic history, both male and female swimmers will swim the same exact distance events.
Which, by the way, means that Ledecky — the most dominant swimmer in the world — will get to swim another event in which she owns the world record time (15:25.48). She set that record – and beat the silver-medal finisher by 15 seconds – at the 2015 world championship meet in Kazan, Russia. The Tokyo Olympics are three years away, certainly, but if Ledecky adds this event to the five she swam in Rio, she will have a chance to win six gold medals in one Games.
Last year, when asked about the Olympics not having the same distance events for men and women despite other FINA and other major international competitions including both, Ledecky said she wanted to see the 1,500 free added to the Games.
“I would love for them to,” Ledecky said at U.S. Olympic trials in 2016. “I just swim whatever they have in the meet. I don't know how much of a say I would be able to have on that. I think the one thing is just with the history of the 800, that the 800 should still be in the Olympics, and they should add the 1,500 for the women and the 800 for the men.”
And that’s exactly what the IOC did.