Phelps, US Grab Relay Record
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Aug 2, 2009 2:51 PM CDT
Ryan Lochte of the United States swims in a Men's 400m Individual Medley heat at the FINA Swimming World Championships in Rome, Sunday, Aug. 2, 2009.    (Michael Sohn)
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(Newser) – Michael Phelps and the US 400-meter medley relay team closed the fastest meet in swimming history with an appropriate finish Sunday night in Rome—the 43rd world record. Phelps earned his fifth gold medal of a world championship that showed he's still got plenty of motivation, even after scoring a record eight golds at the Beijing Olympics.

Swimming the butterfly leg, Phelps helped the US pull away from Germany and Australia to win in 3 minutes, 27.28 seconds. That easily broke the mark set by the Americans at last summer's Olympics, 3:29.34. Also today, Ryan Lochte won his fourth gold medal of the championships and Germany's Britta Steffen matched her 50-100 freestyle sweep in Beijing.