Phelps Nails 3rd Gold, New Record

Swimmer smashes 200-meter freestyle record, matches Spitz in career medals
By Katherine Thompson,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 12, 2008 2:58 AM CDT
United States' gold medal winner Michael Phelps, center, is flanked by South Korea's silver medalist Park Tae-hwan and United States' bronze medal winner Peter Vanderkaay.   (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)
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(Newser) – Michael Phelps racked a third gold medal today, this one in the 200-meter freestyle, and obliterated another world record in the process. His time of 1:42.96 seconds shaved nearly a full second off his previous best, reports the Baltimore Sun. The gold, his ninth overall, ties him with Mark Spitz and three others as the winningest Olympians.

After securing his third gold medal and third new world record in as many days, Phelps went on to post the fastest qualifying time in the 200-meter butterfly semifinals less than an hour later.  "Phelps swam so fast," said  Park Tae Hwan, the Korean swimmer who took silver in the freestlye. "It is my honor to compete with him." (Read more Michael Phelps stories.)