Michael Phelps won gold in the men’s 200M IM on Thursday, beating Ryan Lochte and winning his 16th gold medal in the Olympics, his first individual gold in the London Games.
Phelps won the gold with a time of 1:54:27, which was.63 seconds ahead of silver medalist and teammate Ryan Lochte. Laszlo Cseh of Hungary captured bronze, according to USA Today.
With the completion of the men’s 200m IM, Phelps now has 20 career Olympic medals, making him the most decorated Olympian ever. Lochte is in second with 11 medals. Phelps also became the first man to win an individual event during three consecutive Olympic Games.
Lochte had two finals on Thursday, finishing third behind Tyler Clary and Japan’s Ryosuke Irie in the men’s 200 backstroke. He had a little over 20 minutes to prepare for the 200IM. Clary also broke the Olympic record of 1:53:94 in the 200 back, beating the time set by Lochte four years ago. Clary’s time was 1:53.41.
The Bleacher Report notes that Michael Phelps’ farewell games started with a disappointment, as he barely qualified for the men’s 400IM, and finished the final in fourth. Now, however, his games are looking up since he has won two golds and two silvers in five races.
Before the race, Phelps stated of his rival Lochte, according to The Daily Mail, that:
“We love racing against each other. Neither one of us likes to lose. I like to say we bring out the best in one another.”
The 27-year-old Olympian also told reporters about the surprise phone call he received yesterday, saying:
“I answered the phone and the voice said ‘Michael?’ ‘Yes.’ ‘Please hold for the President of the United States.’ I was like, ‘wow.’”
The President told him that the country was supporting him, and that he was proud of his performance. Then he stated, “He finished by saying ‘make sure you tell your mom I said hi.’”