Hungary’s Katinka Hosszu entered the women’s 400 meter individual medley final Saturday night as the favorite to win the gold medal. Not only did Hosszu win gold, her first-ever Olympic medal of any kind, but she shattered the world record in the process.
Hosszu finished with a time of 4:26.36, more than two seconds better than the world record set by China’s Ye Shiwen in London four years ago. After failing to win a medal four years ago Hosszu was at the low point in her career. But with her excitable husband Shane Tusup also serving as her coach, Hosszu bounced back and on Saturday notched the greatest achievement of her career to date.
And at 27 years old Hosszu is the oldest gold medalist in the history of this event, overtaking Ireland’s Michelle Smith (1996). As a former USC swimmer, Hosszu’s win means that USC has had at least one gold medalist in every Olympics since 1912.
Maya DiRado of the United States won the silver medal with a time of 4:31.15, just three one-hundredths of a second off of the American record. Winning the bronze medal was Spain’s Mireia Belmonte, who finished at 4:32.39. Elizabeth Beisel of the United States failed to medal after winning the silver in this event four years ago in London, finishing sixth with a time of 4:34.98.