Phelps Beats Rival, Returns Suit Taunt

By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Aug 1, 2009 12:58 PM CDT
Michael Phelps of the United States reacts after winning the Men's 100m Butterfly final, at the FINA Swimming World Championships in Rome, Saturday, Aug. 1, 2009.   (AP Photo/Michael Sohn)
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(Newser) – Michael Phelps beat Milorad Cavic again, and this time there was no doubt about it. With a defiant performance in a supposedly inferior suit, Phelps became the first swimmer to break 50 seconds in the 100-meter butterfly, beating the Serbian with a time of 49.82. Cavic also broke 50 seconds, but 49.95 was good enough only for silver. He wasn't nearly as close as last year's Beijing Olympics, when Phelps famously won by one-hundredth of a second. Cavic always maintained that he actually touched first.

When Phelps saw his time, he hopped up on the lane rope separating him and Cavic, threw up his arms and let out a scream toward the US cheering section. Phelps also tugged at his Speedo LZR Racer swimsuit—no doubt in reference to Cavic offering to get Phelps one of those supposedly faster polyurethane suits so he wouldn't have any excuses. "When there are things that are said, the only thing it does for me is fire me up," Phelps told NBC. "It does nothing but literally motivate me to no end, and I love it."