It may have been the first showdown between Americans Ryan Lochte and Michael Phelps at the 2012 Summer Olympics… But when all was said and done in men’s 400-meter individual medley final, Thiago Pereira – not Phelps – was Lochte’s closest competitor…
The 26-year-old Brazilian swimmer won the silver medal after finishing a distant second to Lochte in Saturday’s final at the London Aquatic Center, while Phelps came in a disappointing fourth.
Pereira earned a spot on the podium in part to a stellar performance in the breaststroke portion, which propelled him to move from fifth to second, leaving Phelps, eventual bronze-medalist Kosuke Hagino of Japan and South Africa’s Chad le Clos in his wake.
Lochte, who dominated the race from start to finish, touched the wall in 4:05.18, more than three seconds ahead of Pereira, who clocked in at 4:08.86.
It’s Pereira’s first Olympic medal in his third swimming final. At 2004 Summer Olympics in Athens, he reached the final of the 200-meter IM, finishing in fifth place. In the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing, he again reached the final of the 200-meter IM, finishing fourth.