Phelps loses 200 free again — to teammate Ryan Lochte

SHANGHAI — Ryan Lochte overtook Michael Phelps on the final turn of the 200-meter freestyle to win one of the most highly awaited races of the world championships Tuesday, reminding everyone he is a threat to replace his American teammate as the world's top swimmer.

Lochte touched in 1 minute, 44.44 seconds, with Phelps taking the silver in 1:44.79. Defending champion Paul Biedermann of Germany settled for bronze in 1:44.88.

Lochte also beat Phelps in the 200 individual medley and 200 backstroke at last year's U.S. championships, then won six golds to Phelps' five at the Pan Pacific Championships in 2010 — prompting Phelps' coach Bob Bowman to acknowledge that Lochte was the best swimmer last year.

Phelps led at the 50 and 100 marks before Lochte, who was swimming in the next lane, surged in front.

"I knew Michael wanted to go out just to clean water, so I knew I had to be in striking distance and just work what I'm good at — those underwaters on each turn," Lochte said. "It's a big confidence boost. Hopefully this win will help me carry on through my other races this week."

Lochte hardly celebrated. Phelps then shook his hand, signaling a friendly rivalry.

Park Tae-hwan of South Korea, who won the 400 free on the opening night of the eight-day meet on Sunday, was fourth.

Already energized by Lochte's win, the near capacity crowd at the Oriental Sports Center upped the noise when local favorite Zhao Jing of China won the next race, the women's 100 backstroke.

In the men's 100 back, Camille Lacourt and Jeremy Stravius of France finished in a rare dead heat for gold, clocking 52.76 before celebrating together over a lane rope. The bronze went to Ryosuke Irie of Japan in 52.98.

Lotte Friis of Denmark won the women's 1,500 free — a non-Olympic event — in 15:49.59. World record holder Kate Ziegler of the United States took the silver, and Li Xuanxu of China captured the bronze.

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