Ledecky, Phelps Help US Find Swimming Gold | NBC 7 San Diego
2016 Rio Olympic Games

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Ledecky, Phelps Help US Find Swimming Gold

US wins two gold medals a night after it was kept off the top of the podium

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    Martin Meissner/AP
    Michael Phelps celebrates as the USA wins the gold medal in the men's 4x100-meter freestyle final at the 2016 Summer Olympics, Sunday, Aug. 7, 2016, in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

    Michael Phelps won his 19th Olympic gold medal, Katie Ledecky bettered her own world record and the United States added three bronze medals to those two golds on a lucrative Sunday night in the pool at the Rio Olympics.

    Phelps got the 23rd overall medal of his career when the United States took the 4x100-meter freestyle relay in 3 minutes, 9.92 seconds, beating defending champion France and Australia.

    Swimming the second leg, Phelps chased down Fabien Gilot and handed off a lead the Americans never gave up.

    "I wanted to do as much as I could to give these guys some clear water," Phelps said after winning the 23rd Olympic medal of his career.

    Ryan Held and anchor Nathan Adrian finished off the race started by Olympic newcomer Caeleb Dressel.

    In 2008, the Americans memorably defeated the French when Jason Lezak rallied against Alain Bernard with the fastest 100 split in history, a victory that kept Phelps on course to win a record eight gold medals in Beijing.

    Four years ago, the French got their revenge when Yannick Agnel caught Ryan Lochte on the anchor leg.

    Earlier, Ledecky beat her own world record in the 400-meter freestyle, taking the USA's first swimming gold medal of the 2016 Olympics with a time of 3 minutes, 56.46 seconds.

    She finished almost five seconds ahead of Britain’s Jazz Carlin (4:01.23) and the USA’s Leah Smith (4:01.92).

    The 19-year-old Ledecky added to her silver medal from the night before in the 4x100 freestyle relay. Her swim was the third world record set in three finals on Sunday night, with the men’s 4x100 free relay yet to come.

    Ledecky is set to swim in the 200 free on Tuesday night and defend her 2012 Olympic title in the 800 on Friday night.

    Dana Vollmer and Cody Miller also won bronze medals Sunday night. Vollmer got hers in the women’s 100-meter butterfly when Sarah Sjostrom lowered her world record, winning in 55.48 seconds ahead of Canada's Penny Oleksiak.

    Miller set an American record in the 100-meter breaststroke, with a time of 58.87. He was also behind a world record performance — Adam Peaty lowered the record he set two days earlier, coming home in 57.13 seconds to beat beat out Cameron van der Burghe of South Africa.