The United States set an American record in the women's 4x100 meter freestyle relay, perhaps justifying the team's decision to drop Natalie Coughlin from the relay, but that was not good enough for a gold medal. In an extremely close race, Australia captured the gold medal in Olympic Record time.
Australia won the race in 3:33.15. The Netherlands won silver and finished less than one second behind in 3:33.79. The United States captured a medal comfortably, beating fourth-place China by more than two seconds, but they were more than a second behind the Aussies with 3:34.24.
The United States got off to a strong start with Missy Franklin and Jessica Hardy, but fell to second place by a split second at the end of Lia Neal's leg. In the final leg of the race, Melanie Schlanger defeated Allison Schmidt and Ranomi Kromowidjojo of Australia in impressive fashion.
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