On August 12, 2008, Michael Phelps became the fifth person to claim nine Olympic gold medals when he won the 200-meter freestyle in Beijing.
Phelps finished the first 50 meters of the race .03 seconds behind Australia’s Moss Burmester but bounced back to lead half way through the race. He was ahead of Burmester by .58 seconds with 50 meters left in the race.
Phelps finished the race in 1:52.03, breaking the world record by .06 seconds. Hungry’s Laszlo Cseh was awarded the silver medal and Japan’s Takeshi Matsuda claimed the bronze.
Video source: Beijing 2008 – Athletics Gymnastics Aquatics on YouTube
Phelps started swimming as a 7-year-old in need of an outlet for his energy after being diagnosed with ADHD. He placed fifth in the 200-meter butterfly at the 2000 Sydney Olympics at age 15. In Athens, Phelps won two bronze and six gold medals and he never looked back.
Despite hitting hard times, the 31-year-old has claimed a gold medal in all four of his events and has two events remaining in the Rio games.
Tonight, the world prepares to watch Phelps in what could be his final individual Olympic race, the 100-meter butterfly. He has a chance to claim his 27th medal, it could even be his 23rd gold.
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