Philly Sports Live

Phelps wins record 19th Olympic medal

Four years after he climbed to the top of Olympic achievement, Michael Phelps took the last step he needed to reach the absolute peak.

The greatest swimmer of all time became the most decorated Olympian of all time when he won a record 19th Olympic medal at the London Games on Tuesday.

With a little help from his American relay teammates (including Winnetka’s Conor Dwyer), Phelps won his first gold medal in London in the 800-meter freestyle less than an hour after a shocking defeat in the 200 butterfly, an event he has dominated for more than a decade.

His gold-medal teammates threw their arms around him and the crowd at London’s Aquatic Centre rose to their feet to witness the coronation of the Olympic king.

The record Phelps broke was held by Soviet gymnast Larisa Latynina, who won the last of her 18 Olympic medal at Tokyo in 1964.