OMAHA, Neb. — Michael Phelps won another duel with Ryan Lochte at the U.S. swimming trials Saturday night, edging his rival in their most stirring race yet to take the 200-meter individual medley.
Phelps had an advantage for the race, their third trials final meeting. He entered fresh while Lochte had to recover after winning the 200 backstroke about a half-hour earlier in a Phelps-less final.
If Lochte was tired, he didn't look it, going stroke for stroke with the 14-time gold medalist. But Phelps led at every turn and got to the wall in 1 minute, 54.84 seconds, the fastest time in the world this year.
Lochte, a former Gator, was right behind in 1:54.93, the second-fastest time in 2012, to get another spot on the U.S. team. Florida's Conor Dwyer was third.
Then Phelps and Lochte swam in the 100 butterfly semis and advanced to the final, Phelps with 2012's fastest time, 51.35. Lochte, who swam his third race in about 58 minutes, tied for seventh. "I don't feel so hot," he told NBC afterward.
Phelps, who turned 27 Saturday, got his second trials final win over Lochte and stayed on track to compete in eight events, including relays, at London and a chance to equal his record eight gold medals of 2008. Lochte got his third and fourth individual berths.
In the butterfly, not advancing out of the heats were UF's Cameron Martin, a Clearwater Central Catholic graduate, and Tommy Whyer, a Tampa Jesuit grad from New Port Richey.
Jessica Hardy made up for missing the 2008 Games because of a failed drug test, winning the 100 freestyle. Natalie Coughlin got sixth to make her third Olympic team, but the 11-time medalist will swim only in relays. Rebecca Soni got a second individual race in London, winning the 200 breaststroke in 2012's fastest time, 2:21.13.
In women's 800 freestyle qualifying, Becca Mann, 14, of Clearwater, advanced to tonight's final. Not advancing were UF's Jamie Bohunicky, Ariel Finke of Countryside High and Taylor Katz of Tarpon Springs and East Lake High.
Anthony Ervin had the top time in the 50 freestyle semis. Ervin, 31, was co-gold medalist in 2000 but retired before he could defend his title. He returned to the pool last year. Not advancing out of the heats were UF's Bradley DeBorde and James Turner, ex-Gator Matt Norton and Florida State's Mark Weber.
In the women's 200 backstroke semis, Missy Franklin led the qualifiers for the final. Also advancing were UF's Elizabeth Beisel and ex-Gator Teresa Crippen.