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MICHAEL PHELPS QUALIFY FOR 5TH OLYMPICS

MICHAEL PHELPS QUALIFY FOR 5TH OLYMPICS
Michael Phelps is officially on his way to the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, becoming the first American male swimmer to qualify for five Olympics, per the United States Olympic team’s Twitter feed. According to ESPN Stats & Info’s Paul Carr, Dara Torres is the only other American swimmer to compete in five Olympics.

Phelps qualified Wednesday after winning the 200-meter butterfly at the U.S. Olympic trials in Omaha, Nebraska. The 30-year-old narrowly edged out Tom Shields in the final with a time of 1:54.84. According toMitch Bowmile of SwimSwam.com, Phelps was on pace to break his own world-record time (1:51.51) halfway through the race before slowing down a bit in the final 100 meters.

“That means the most tonight,” Phelps said, per Nicole Auerbach ofUSA Today. “With everything that’s happened, being able to come back, that’s probably harder than any swim I’ve had in my life.”

Phelps already owns the most overall medals (22) and most gold medals (18) of any Olympian in history.

He’ll compete in two more events at the U.S. trials: the 200-meter individual medley and 100-meter butterfly. Depending on his performance in those events and his possible inclusion on any U.S. relay teams, Phelps could add six more medals in Rio to his already historic haul.