Michael Phelps became the first male swimmer to win the same event at three successive Olympics when he clinched the men’s 200-meter individual medley gold medal at the London Games on Thursday.
The American may no longer be the unstoppable force he was in Beijing four years ago, but he still provided an everlasting reminder of his incredible talent and determination by winning the grueling multi-discipline event.
Phelps led all the way and got his giant hands on the wall first in a time of 1 minute, 54.27 seconds, relegating compatriot and world champion Ryan Lochte to silver and Hungary’s Laszlo Cseh to bronze.
“To be able to win the gold medal and repeat three times is something pretty special,” Phelps said. “I’m pretty pleased with gold.”
Tyler Clary stormed home on the last lap to win gold in 1:53.41 in the 200 backstroke ahead of Japan’s Ryosuke Irie and Lochte.
Rebecca Soni broke the world record for the second time in 24 hours to win the 200 breaststroke as the U.S. continued its domination in the pool, winning 11 gold medals in the first six days.
Soni surged away from her rivals on the final lap to win in 2:19.59, while Japan’s Satomi Suzuki won the silver medal and the bronze went to Iuliia Efimova of Russia.