Food and sleep were all Michael Phelps wanted after helping the United States dominate Australia.
Phelps won three individual events and anchored the Americans to an easy victory in the 400-meter medley relay yesterday at the Duel in the Pool meet in Irvine, Calif.
The Americans won 18 races to 10 for the Aussies. Overall, the United States outscored Australia 183-102, repeating its victory from 2003.
Exhaustion was a factor for both teams after the eight-day world championships that ended Sunday. The teams arrived from Canada on Monday.
"It's been a long day, I'm ready to crash right now," Phelps said. "We all wanted to swim fast, we wanted to give something back to the crowd coming out here to support us."
The made-for-TV event attracted a sellout crowd of 2,600 at Woollett Aquatic Center. Young girls waved signs saying, "We love Phelps."
He didn't disappoint, winning the 200 and 400 individual medleys and the 200 butterfly. Phelps was one of four world record holders on the victorious 400 medley relay, joining hometown favorite Aaron Peirsol, Brendan Hansen and Ian Crocker. They finished in 3 minutes 36.39 seconds -- beating the Aussies by more than six seconds.
Phelps hasn't lost a 400 IM since the 2001 U.S. spring nationals, a streak of eight races.
His work isn't done, either.
He will swim in the U.S. summer nationals that run today through Sunday in the same pool.
Aussie Grant Hackett won the 400 freestyle in 3:45.31, but he was upset in the 200 free by American Peter Vanderkaay.
"My body felt extremely tired," Hackett said. "I've got five or six gears in me, but I was crunching to get into second without a clutch. It was a tough day."
Katie Hoff, the 16-year-old who emerged as a future star at last week's world championships, swept the 200 and 400 IMs. She won the 400 IM by 41/2 seconds, besting her time in Montreal. "I felt good about what I accomplished," Hoff said.
Aussie Leisel Jones and American Jessica Hardy renewed their budding rivalry in the 100 breaststroke that began last week. Jones won in 1:06.21 -- the second-fastest time and just one-hundredth of a second off Hardy's week-old world record.
Jones would have claimed $25,000 if she had broken the mark.
-- From News Services