Michael Phelps Breaks an Ancient Olympic Record
Michael Phelps is the greatest Olympic athlete in the modern era, that fact was undisputed even heading into the Rio 2016 Games. Now, he's got the hardware to claim he's the greatest Olympic athlete ever.
On Thursday, Michael Phelps swam away with his 22nd Olympic gold medal in the 200 meter Individual Medley discipline. He blew out his competition winning the race by over two seconds.That win marked his 4th straight gold medal in that particular race, a feat no one had ever done before in swimming, winning the same event four Olympics in a row.
For Phelps that was also his 13th individual gold medal, breaking an all-time Olympic record previously held by Leonidas of Rhodes, who won 12 gold medals competing in the Ancient Olympiad. Leonidas won three gold medals each in Olympic Games from 168BC to 152BC. That's an over 2,100 year old record.
To further show his amazing ability, after winning a grueling race like the 200 IM, he had just 37 minutes before he was back in the pool for his semifinal heat for the 100 meter butterfly. He finished 2nd in his heat to qualify for the final, which will give him a chance to pad his lead over Leonidas with individual gold number 14. The 100 meter butterfly final goes on Friday.
As of this writing Phelps' trophy display has 26 total medals, 22 of them gold and 13 of those golds won on an individual basis, spanning over five Olympic games. He also has the record for most gold medals in one Olympics (Beijing 2008, 8 golds).
There is no question Michael Phelps is the greatest Olympian and possibly the greatest athlete of all-time.