Lochte blows Phelps out of the water
Olympic Swimming:Michael Phelps suffered his first Olympic defeat in eight years when he finished fourth behind Ryan Lochte in the final of the men's 400 metres individual medley. Lochte added the Olympic gold medal to the world title he won in Shanghai last year when he cruised to a surprisingly lopsided victory in four minutes 05.18 seconds.
Brazil's Thiago Pereira won the silver medal after finishing second in 4:08.86 while Japanese teenager Kosuke Hagino collected the bronze for finishing third in 4:08.94. Phelps, who won the gruelling event at the past two Olympics, faded to finish fourth in 4:09.28, more than five seconds outside his world record.
The race, a lung-bursting test to decide the world's best all-round swimmer, was billed as one of the great rivalries of the London Games but failed to live up to all expectations as Lochte stormed away to win easily.Phelps was swimming in the outside lane after just scraping into the final as the slowest qualifier and was never a threat.
The last time Phelps, who won eight gold medals in Beijing four years ago, was beaten in an Olympic final was when he came third behind Ian Thorpe and Pieter van den Hoogenband in the 200 freestyle at Athens, which was dubbed the "race of the century."
He has entered seven events in London and needs to win three medals to break the all-time record of 18 held by Soviet gymnast Larisa Latynina.For Lochte, it was his fourth gold medal and the first of what is expected to be several more in London.
Chinese teenager Ye Shiwen smashed the world record to win the gold medal in the women's 400 metres individual medley. The 16-year-old unleashed an incredible sprint over the concluding freestyle leg to stop the clock at four minutes 28.43 seconds and became the first woman to break a long-course world record since the ban on polyurethane bodysuits at the end of 2009.
She slashed more than a second off the previous record of 4:29.45 set by Australia's Stephanie Rice at the 2008 Beijing Olympics. America's Elizabeth Beisel, the reigning world champion for the gruelling event, finished second in 4:31.27 after snatching the lead at the end of the breaststroke leg.
China's Li Xuanxu came third in 4:32.91, giving China their third medal in the pool on the first day of competition after Sun Yang won the men's 400 freestyle gold.