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American Phelps Wins Gold, Sets 400m Individual Medley Record - 2004-08-14


American swimmer Michael Phelps set a new world record in the pool, China and Japan won gold in shooting and judo and an Italian cyclist won the men's road race. Greek fans saw two of their heroes withdrawn from the Games amid a doping controversy.

American Michael Phelps hopes to surpass Mark Spitz's record of seven gold medals and the 19-year-old American took the first step Saturday in record time.

Phelps won the men's 400-meter individual medley swim race in a world record of 4:08.26 minutes, .15 faster than his previous mark.

Chinese shooters took the first two gold medals of the day with Du Li winning the women's 10-meter air rifle contest. She won the gold medal on her final shot, edging out Russia's Lyubov Galkina by a half point. Wang Yifu then took the men's 10-meter air pistol competition with a score of 690.

Japanese athletes won gold in men's and women's judo, with Ryoko Tani defending her 48 kilogram title and Tadahiro Nomura became the first three-time Olympic champion by taking the men's 60-kilogram gold medal.

Paolo Bettini of Italy edged Portugal's Sergio Paulinho to win the gold medal in the men's Olympic road race Saturday. Axel Merckx of Belgium took the bronze.

The men's sabre gold medal went to Aldo Montano of Italy, who beat Hungary's Zsolt Nemcsik in the final.

A doping controversy led to the withdrawal of two of Greece's leading medal hopes -- reigning 200 meters sprint gold medalist Kostas Kenteris and women's 100-meters silver medalist Katerina Thanou -- from the Games. Their coach was also pulled out of the Games amid a doping controversy.

Kenteris and Thanou missed a drug test earlier in the week, but were hospitalized after wrecking their motorcycle Thursday night. The IOC has scheduled a hearing to determine whether to ban the two sprinters Monday.

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