Flash! Phelps Downs 200 LCM Fly World Record

COLUMBIA, Missouri, February 17. MORE than a month out from the World Championships, Michael Phelps served notice to the world that he is ramping up for a great show.

At the Missouri Grand Prix in Columbia, Mo., Phelps lowered his 200 LCM butterfly record by .09 seconds with a 1:53.71. That time surpassed his Pan Pacific Championship time of 1:53.80 set on Aug. 17, 2006.

"I didn't think I was going to break a record tonight," said Phelps. "I could tell something good was happening when I heard the crowd yelling, but when I looked up at the clock I thought it said 1:56. When I took off my goggles and saw the time, you could tell that my reaction changed a little bit, and I basically went nuts. I definitely did not expect that tonight.

"I hope to go faster in a month from now, but I still have a few events I need to get ready for here. I'm pleased with the way it went right now, and I'm confident. A lot of our practice has been focused on underwater kicking, and I know that the more kicking I do, the faster I can go. And coming off the wall well when people are getting tired is a good weapon to have. We have wanted to work on it, and it's starting to show now."