BEIJING – Michael Phelps won his third gold medal and record-tying ninth of his career Tuesday, breaking his own world record in the 200-meter freestyle at the Beijing Olympics.
The American touched in 1 minute, 42.96 seconds, lowering his old mark of 1:43.86 set at last year's world championships in Australia.
He cruised to the wall nearly 2 seconds ahead of silver medalist Park Tae-hwan of South Korea, who finished in 1:44.85. American Peter Vanderkaay earned the bronze in 1:45.14.
Phelps' ninth gold medal tied him with four others, including Mark Spitz and track star Carl Lewis, for most career golds.
He is 3-for-3, with three world records, in his attempt to break Spitz's 36-year-old record of seven golds in a single games. Spitz set world records in each of his races at the 1972 Munich Olympics.
Phelps' other victories were in the 400 individual medley and 400 freestyle relay.