The U.S. 4x200 freestyle relay team posted the fastest qualifying time this morning at the Aquatic Centre in London, giving Michael Phelps a chance to break Soviet Union gymnast Larisa Latynina’s record for career Olympic medals today.
That’s assuming that the Baltimore swimmer medals in his signature event, the 200-meter butterfly, about an hour before the relay finals are scheduled. The butterfly final is expected to start around 2:49 p.m. local time with the relay at 3:51 p.m. A medal in the 200 fly would tie Phelps with Latynina at 18 medals.
Already the career leader with 14 gold medals, Phelps is searching for his first gold medal at the London Games. He failed to medal Saturday in his first event, the 400 IM, and won silver as part of the 4x100 freestyle relay team on Sunday.
The U.S. 4x200 relay team, Charlie Houchin, Matthew McLean, Davis Tarwater and Conor Dwyer, easily beat the rest of the field this morning with a time of 7: 06.75 seconds. France (7:09.18), Germany (7:09.23) and Australia (7:10.50) followed the Americans. Phelps and Ryan Lochte will swim in the finals for the U.S. The lineup for the relay team will be announced an hour before the final.