Monday, August 11, 2008

Why the Olympics are Awesome

Yesterday's 400 Freestyle Relay was perhaps the most exciting swimming race in Olympic history.

I can only find a video of the last leg of the relay (see below) so I'll set the stage. Michael Phelps is attempting to win gold in eight events. One of the biggest obstacles would be the 400 Freestyle relay. The 100 Freestyle isn't Phelps's best event, and he'd have to rely on his teammates. Standing in the way would be the sprinter-heavy French team. Prior to the race, Alain Bernard, France's anchor and current world record holder in the 100 freestyle (47.50) had said of the United States team: "We will smash them. That's what we came here to do." Although Phelps is the star of the US team, it would be Jason Lezak that came through for the Americans. After three legs of the relay, France had a slight lead on the US. Lezak would have to chase down the world record holder from a half second behind to win gold for the US, and Phelps.



Swimming
Uploaded by bsap11

He did it. Lezak swam his leg in 46.06 and the Americans crushed the world record by almost four seconds, finishing in 3:08.24 (to France's 3:08.32). Awesome.

Update: Link

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