Giant on the move
Michael Phelps — one down, seven to go
Michael Phelps shattered his own world record to win the 400m individual swimming medley in four minutes 03.84 seconds and claim the first of what could be a record-breaking haul of eight gold medals.
The American swimmer, who won six golds at the last Olympics in Athens, has his sights on beating the record of seven golds bagged by Mark Spitz in 1972. The secondary target is four golds to take him ahead of Spitz, Carl Lewis, Finnish middle and long-distance runner Paavo Nurmi and Larysa Latynina, the former Soviet gymnast, in the list of athletes with the most gold medals at the Olympics (currently nine).
Today’s race was one of his two weakest individual events so winning it will give him real hope of at least matching Spitz’s achievement.
Do you think he can beat it? He looked extremely comfortable both in the heats, when he broke what was the Olympic record, and in Sunday’s final, when he blew everyone away.
PHOTO: Michael Phelps of the U.S. celebrates after winning the gold medal in the men’s 400m individual medley during the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games August 10, 2008. REUTERS/Jerry Lampen