Rome » Michael Phelps and the U.S. 400-meter medley relay team closed the fastest meet in swimming history with an appropriate finish Sunday night -- the 43rd world record.
Swimming the butterfly leg, Phelps claimed his fifth gold medal of the world championships by helping the U.S. pull away from Germany and Australia to win in 3 minutes, 27.28 seconds. That easily broke the mark of 3:29.34 set by the Americans at last summer's Olympics.
Eric Shanteau, who overcame testicular cancer to swim his best times, picked up the first major gold medal of his career on the breaststroke leg of the relay, to go along with a silver and bronze in Rome. The other members of the winning team were backstroker Aaron Peirsol and David Walters, swimming the freestyle anchor.
Also Sunday, Ryan Lochte won his fourth gold of the meet, touching in 4:07.01 in the 400 IM.
Germany's Britta Steffen set her third world record of the meet while winning the women's 50 free in 23.73.
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