Katie Ledecky wins race by 37 seconds

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It was a ho-hum Thursday for Katie Ledecky.

Ledecky swam her first 1500m freestyle in nearly two years and won by 37.24 seconds at a Pro Series meet in Santa Clara, Calif. She clocked the fifth-fastest time ever, trailing only the last four instances where she broke the world record in the event.

Ledecky touched the wall in 15 minutes, 35.65 seconds on Thursday. Second-place Kristel Kobrich was more than a full length of the pool behind and stopped the clock in 16:12.89. Full results are here.

The Chilean Kobrich is no slouch, having finished seventh in the 1500m free at the 2015 World Championships.

Ledecky’s still-standing world record from the 2015 Worlds, 15:25.48, is more than 10 seconds faster than her own time Thursday and more than 13 seconds faster than any other woman has posted. Ledecky’s time Thursday was the fastest in the world this year by 28 seconds.

The women’s 1500m free is not an Olympic event, so Ledecky did not swim it at all in 2016. The 1500m free is a men’s event at the Olympics, while the women swim the 800m free.

Ledecky and other swimmers are competing in Santa Clara in preparation for the U.S. Championships in Indianapolis in four weeks. The top two per individual event in Indianapolis qualify for the world championships in Budapest in July.

Ledecky is expected to try and replicate her Ledecky Slam from the 2015 Worlds, where she became the first swimmer to sweep the 200m, 400m, 800m and 1500m frees at a single global meet.

Ledecky, a 20-year-old rising Stanford sophomore, has broken 13 worlds records among the 400m, 800m and 1500m frees. She’s nearly halfway to Michael Phelps‘ tally of 29 individual world records.

Since 2013, Ledecky has lowered the women’s 1500m free world record by 17.06 seconds from 15:42.54 (set by Kate Ziegler in 2007, in the super-suit era, which lowered Janet Evans‘ 1988 mark by nearly 10 seconds).

Ledecky is entered in one more race in Santa Clara, the 200m free on Saturday.

The Santa Clara finals on Friday, Saturday and Sunday will stream on NBCSports.com/live and the NBC Sports app from 8-9:30 p.m. ET. NBCSN will also carry the Friday and Sunday finals live, with the Saturday finals airing on 1:30 a.m. ET on Sunday.

MORE: Phelps eyes WSOP Main Event

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Team USA Opening Ceremony uniforms have heaters

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The U.S. Olympic team uniforms for the PyeongChang Opening Ceremony contain heating components that will last up to 11 hours.

Ice dancers Maia Shibutani and Alex Shibutani and bobsledder Aja Evans wore the uniforms on TODAY on Monday.

The heat technology will come in handy.

The PyeongChang Opening Ceremony on Feb. 9 (live streaming on NBCOlympics.com and the NBC Sports app) will be in an outdoor stadium, likely in below-freezing temperatures.

From USA Today:

“The athletes can set the temperature (there are three settings) via their cellphones. The heat can last up to five hours on the high setting and 11 hours on the low setting, fully charged.”

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MORE: PyeongChang Olympic schedule daily highlights

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Jamaica misses Olympic men’s bobsled by one spot

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The only Jamaican bobsled team in PyeongChang will be its women’s bobsled team.

Jamaica missed qualifying a two-man bobsled team for the Olympics by one spot in rankings finalized last week.

Jamaica still had a chance to sneak into the 30-sled Olympic field if one of the qualified nations declined a spot, but that didn’t happen.

The International Bobsled and Skeleton Federation made it official Monday, publishing the Olympic fields for each event.

At least one Jamaican men’s sled competed in every Olympics from 1988 through 2002, then again in 2014.

Sochi driver Winston Watts retired, but a new team was formed in this Olympic cycle that included former Green Bay Packers and Cincinnati Bengals running back Michael Blair.

New driver Seldwyn Morgan competed on the lower-level North American Cup the last three seasons with a top finish of seventh.

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MORE: Would Usain Bolt make a good bobsledder?