“The young bucks brought tears to our eyes,” Phelps told the Today Show. “I was trying to hold back as much as I could. Nathan started shedding tears, then Ryan was shedding tears. Being a part of the 400-free relay has been a dream of mine. I’ve been on the good side and bad side of it. I was happy we could win that relay as a team.”
Phelps admitted that having his 3-month-old son, Boomer, in the audience while he won his 19th gold medal, made the experience “a lot more emotional.”
“I tried to look for him up there and, when I finally found him, he was asleep,” he said with a laugh. “Hopefully we was awake during the race but, if not, I can play it for him when he’s a bit older. It’s just an inspiration to have him here.”
Kalisz and Phelps, of course, have their training at the North Baltimore Aquatic Club in Mt. Washington to thank. Kalisz has trained at the NBAC since 2000—and, more recently, in Scottsdale, Arizona—with mentor Phelps and coach Bob Bowman. In a 2013 interview, he talked about how rewarding that experience has been.
“Training at NBAC with the greatest swimmer of all time has been probably the best environment for me,” said Kalisz, pictured, clearly enjoying himself in Rio.
“I’ve always dreamed about racing and swimming with him. I never thought that would happen to me.”
Phelps’s work in Rio isn’t done yet. On Tuesday night, he’ll swim the men’s 200-meter fly, on Thursday he’ll swim the 200-meter IM he finishes up on Friday night with his signature 100-meter butterfly.