San Antonio: Michael Phelps made it three national titles in three world leading times in three days on Sunday with a sizzling 200m individual medley triumph at the US swimming championships.
Michael Phelps celebrates his 200m individual medley win at the US Swimming Nationals on Sunday in San Antonio. Pic:AP/PTI
The 18-time Olympic gold medalist electrified the crowd by hitting the 150-meter mark under world record pace en route to a dominant victory in 1min 54.75sec.
"I'm pumped," Phelps said. "Being able to do that right now, I'm very, very pleased and it's something great to build off of."
Although he faded on the final freestyle leg to finish outside the world record of 1:54.00 set by US team-mate Ryan Lochte in 2011, he was more than a second faster than the 1:55.81 Lochte produced to win the world title in Kazan, Russia, this week.
Phelps lost his world championships berth as part of the sanctions for his drunk-driving arrest last September.
With the US nationals running opposite the worlds serving basically as a consolation meet, Phelps has made sure he's on the radar of the globe's elite — posting times that would have been good enough to win in Kazan in the 100m and 200m butterfly as well as the medley.