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USA's Katie Ledecky reacts after taking gold in the final of the women's 800m freestyle race. Photo: Odd Anderson/AFP via Getty Images

American superstar swimmer Katie Ledecky grabbed her second gold medal of this year's Olympic Games, winning the women's 800-meter freestyle race Saturday in Tokyo.

Driving the news: Ledecky, who holds the world record in the 800m freestyle, is considered one of the best women swimmers of all time. Saturday's final marks her third straight Olympic gold in the event.

  • On Saturday, she finished with a time of 8:12.57 to win her sixth career individual Olympic gold.
  • The 800m freestyle has been the 24-year-old's signature event since 2012, when she won her first Olympic gold at age 15.
  • Ledecky, who has broken 14 world records, embraced her competitors after the event, including 15-year-old teammate Katie Grimes.

What she's saying: "I just wanted to finish on a really good note, and I'm so happy," she told NBC News.

  • "That is not my last swim," she added. "I'm at least going to 2024, maybe 2028, we'll see ... You never know if you'll be back at the next Olympics, so just trying to soak it all in."

The big picture: Australia's Ariarne Titmus, whose friendly rivalry with Ledecky was closely watched, won the 800m freestyle silver and Italy's Simona Quadarella took bronze.

  • Earlier this week, Ledecky snagged gold in the first-ever women's 1500m freestyle and took home silver medals in the 400m freestyle and the 4x2100m freestyle relay.

Editor's note: This story has been updated throughout.

Go deeper

Sep 5, 2021 - Sports

U.S. beats China for Paralympics gold in women's sitting volleyball

Team USA's Alexis Shifflett serves the ball during the Tokyo Paralympic Games women's sitting volleyball pool match against Rwanda in Chiba, Japan, on Aug. 28. Photo: Yasuyoshi Chiba/AFP via Getty Images

Team USA won gold in the Tokyo Paralympic Games women's sitting volleyball final on Sunday morning local time.

The big picture: The defending champions beat China 3-1 in the final. After the event was added to the Paralympics in 2004, China won the first three golds. The Americans' win took the U.S. Paralympic medals tally to 103, including 36 golds.

Editor's note: This article has been updated with details of China's previous wins in the event.

2020 was the deadliest year for environmental defenders

Engineer Sandra Cuéllar is one of many Colombians who've gone missing or been killed for their environmental activism. Photo: Luis Robayo/AFP via Getty Images

Latin America and the Caribbean is the deadliest region for environmental defenders, a violent record that has global repercussions.

Why it matters: The region has several of the most biodiverse areas of the planet, but they are constantly threatened by logging, mining or aquifer overexploitation.

3 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Senate offices closing ahead of "Justice for J6" demonstration

Security fencing outside the U.S. Capitol ahead of a planned "Justice for J6" rally in Washington, D.C.. Photo: Stefani Reynolds/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Multiple congressional offices will be closed Friday amid security precautions ahead of Saturday's rally in support of jailed Jan. 6 rioters, aides who have been instructed to work remotely tell Axios.

Why it matters: As the U.S. Capitol faces its first large-scale security test since the deadly attack, House and Senate offices are taking precautionary measures to protect staff as well as lawmakers.