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Michael Phelps Wins Butterfly, Loses Freestyle Race

The record-breaking Olympic swim champ came in first and second place in the two races at the last meet before he heads to the Olympic trials

Friday, Jun 1, 2012  |  Updated 8:03 PM PDT
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Michael Phelps won the butterfly but lost the freestyle race at his last meet before he heads to the Olympic trials.

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Michael Phelps split two races in his final meet before the U.S. Olympic trials.

The 14-time Olympic gold medalist finished second to Jimmy Feigen in the 100-meter freestyle Friday night with a time of 49.05 seconds to Feigen's 48.63. Another Olympian, Garrett Weber-Gale, who won two relay gold medals in the 2008 Beijing Games, finished sixth.

Phelps used his poor showing in that race as motivation in the 100 butterfly, roaring to an easy win in 52.02 that included a final 50-meter split of 27.25.

"I didn't swim smart or very well in the 100, and I got beat because of it," Phelps said. "I was angry with myself for that, and I turned it around a little in the 100 butterfly."

The meet, conducted by the University of Texas aquatic program as an alternative to the season's final Grand Prix event in Santa Clara, Calif., is Phelps' last competition before the Olympic trials in Omaha, which begin June 25.

"Without a doubt, the clock is ticking for the upcoming Olympics, and I have to keep working hard to be where I want to be by July 27," Phelps said.

Phelps set his first world record at the pool used for this meet as a 15-year-old in March 2001 when he clocked 1:54.92 in the 200-meter butterfly. The mark stood just a few months before he broke it himself, but that swim remains a pool record after more than 11 years.

Four-time Olympic medalist Brendan Hansen won the 200-meter breaststroke in 2:13.54, almost 3 seconds slower than his winning time in the 2011 U.S. nationals.

Phelps, 2008 Olympic bronze medal winner Allison Schmitt, and Missy Franklin entered this weekend's meet as the top three point scorers in USA Swimming's Grand Prix series.

Franklin, the world record holder in the 200-meter backstroke (on a short course) and the American record holder in the 200-meter backstroke (long course), warmed up for her best events with a third-place finish in the 100-meter freestyle in 54.73, behind Schmitt's 53.94 and Megan Romano's 54.16.

Franklin failed to earn a spot in the championship heat of the 400-meter freestyle, finishing far behind winner Sarah Henry's time of 4:09.16.

Kathleen Hersey, the eighth-place finisher in the 200-meter butterfly at Beijing, easily won the 100-meter butterfly Friday in 58.76, more than a second and a half ahead of her nearest competitor.

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