Michael Phelps, with a big hand from three teammates, won his eighth gold medal of the Olympics to eclipse Mark Spitz’s seven-gold performance at the 1972 Munich Games. Of the five individual races and three relays he swam in Beijing, he set world records in seven and an Olympic record in the eighth.
China has topped 50 medals overall, with 28 of them gold. The United States has 17 golds, with 57 total. Tunisia got its first Olympic gold medal in swimming when Oussama Mellouli won the 1,500-meter freestyle.
Beijing’s weather was a factor all right for women’s marathon gold medalist Constantina Tomescu-Dita of Romania _ just not what everybody thought. Instead of muggy, with choking pollution, the field enjoyed 73-degree temperatures. “The weather helped me a lot,” said Tomescu-Dita, who finished in 2 hours, 26 minutes, 44 seconds.
HARDLY A SLOW BOAT TO CHINA
Two sailing golds for Britain: Ben Ainslie won the Finn class, and the three-woman Yngling team of Sarah Ayton, Sarah Webb and Pippa Wilson won in strong wind and heavy rain.
Reigning women’s 400-meter hurdles champion Fani Halkia will not defend her Olympic title after becoming the latest Greek athlete to fail a doping test. The IOC confirmed Halkia tested positive for a steroid at a training camp in Japan before coming to Beijing. She is the fourth athlete to test positive during the IOC’s Beijing anti-doping program.
Kerri Walsh and Misty May-Treanor earned a trip to the final four Sunday with a victory over Brazil. … American Matt Emmons lost a gold medal for the second straight Olympics with a stunning mistake on his final shot in the 50-meter 3-position rifle. As he was lowering his gun to focus on the target, his finger hit the trigger and it went off. China’s Qiu Jian took the gold.
“I was thinking not to blow the lead. I was really nervous.” _ Jason Lezak, swimming the anchor leg of the 400-meter medley relay that gave Michael Phelps his historic eighth gold medal in Beijing.
MONDAY’S SCHEDULE HIGHLIGHTS
Americans Angelo Taylor, Bershawn Jackson and Kerron Clement had the three top times in the men’s 400 hurdles ahead of Monday’s final, which takes place at 10 p.m. (10 a.m. EDT).