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Michael Phelps’ 18 Gold Medals: A Photo Timeline

Michael Phelps has won his 18th Olympic gold medal in the 4X100 medley relay in London, giving him twice as many golds as any other Olympian in history. Here’s a look at each of his Olympic first-place triumphs — from Athens to Beijing to London.


Phelps wins his first Olympic gold with a world record time of 4:08.26


Phelps bags his second Olympic gold with an Olympic record time of 1:54.04.


Phelps teams with Ryan Lochte, Peter Vanderkaay and Klete Keller to win gold with a time of 7:07.33.


Another gold, another Olympic record time: 1:57.14.


Phelps edges out teammate and world record holder Ian Crocker by 4/100 of a second to win gold in 51.25.


The Americans set a world record and win the gold. *Phelps doesn’t swim in the final but receives a medal for swimming in a preliminary heat. The young Phelps finishes the Athens Games with six golds and two bronzes.


Phelps breaks his own world record (set in a preliminary heat), swimming 4:03.84 for the gold.


More gold. The team sets a world record in 3:08.24 while Phelps swims his freestyle leg in an American record 47.51.


Another gold, another world record (breaking his own) in 1:42.96. With nine Olympic gold medals, Phelps ties Mark Spitz, Larisa Latynina, Paavo Nurmi and Carl Lewis.

Yet another gold, yet another world record in 1:52.03. That’s four golds and four world records in four events so far in Beijing. And with 10 lifetime golds, he has the most of any modern Olympian.


Phelps joins Ryan Lochte, Ricky Berens and Peter Vanderkaay to win another gold and, yes, set another world record in 6:58.56. The Americans smash the old record by four and a half seconds.


Yawn. More gold. More world record setting (1:54.23).


In a controversial photo finish, Phelps takes gold with an Olympic record time of 50.58.


Phelps teams with Brendan Hansen, Aaron Peirsol and Jason Lezak for another gold and another world record in 3:29.34 — beating the Americans’ record set in Athens. Phelps totals eight golds in these Games, topping Mark Spitz’s record of seven.


After two silvers earlier in London, this gold, in a time of 6:59.70, makes Phelps the winner of the most Olympic medals in history.


Phelps tops rival Ryan Lochte for the gold in 1:54.27.


Phelps wins his third straight Olympic gold in this event with a time of 51.21.


Phelps and his teammates bring another gold home for the U.S., giving Phelps twice as many golds as any Olympian in history. In his final Olympic race, Phelps puts an exclamation point on his legacy as the greatest Olympian in history.

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