Talk about a photo finish! Spanish swimmer Mireia Belmonte edged out the narrowest of victories in the 200m butterfly Olympic event on Aug. 10, beating British favorite Madeline Groves by just inches! Keep reading for details on their amazing race.
At the 200m butterfly final on Aug. 10, it all came down to eight women: Australia’s Madeline Groves, 21, and Brianna Throssel, 20; Spain’s Mireia Belmonte, 25; Zhou Yilin, 23, and Zhang Yufei, 18, of China; Japan’s Natsumi Hoshi, 25; and America’s Hali Flickinger, 20, and Cammile Adams, 23.
Madeline got out to an early lead which she held onto throughout the first 100 meters, but Mireia overtook her at the final turn and the two battled it out to the very end, with Mireia finishing three one hundredths of a second over Madeline to win the gold. Literally, it came down to a matter of a fingertip, the finish was so close. This was Mireia’s fourth career Olympic medal and her very first gold!
Cammile entered the event as the 2016 Worlds silver medalist, but she only qualified eighth during the semifinals. She barely made the cut and lagged behind the leaders in the final. Hali, who made her Olympic debut in Rio, qualified sixth, per NBC Olympics. Though they managed to make it into the finals, the American swimmers were seconds behind Madeline and Mireia, the two heavy favorites to win the event.
Mireia had already brought some Olympic glory to her home country of Spain. She secured the bronze in the Women’s 400m individual medley, falling just a second behind America’s Madeline Dirado. However, both of these swimming superstars were blown completely out of the water by Katinka Hosszu, as the Hungarian set a world record!
On the men’s side, Michael Phelps, 31, soared like a butterfly on Aug. 9. The “Flying Fish” reclaimed his 200m gold medal after defeating Chad le Clos, 24, the man who beat him at the London 2012 games. In fact, he crushed it, securing what would be his 20th gold medal (before going on to win his 21st in the 4x200m relay) Both Michael and Mireia proves that butterflies can definitely be fierce.
Did the swimmer you wanted to win take home a medal, HollywoodLifers?