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TOKYO — Bobby Finke stunned the field in the 800-meter freestyle here at the Olympics, coming from fifth place late in the distance race to win gold.
Finke trailed for the better part of 775 meters, only to chase down Italy’s Gregorio Paltrinieri and Ukraine’s Mykhailo Romanchuk in the final 25 to win the first-ever men’s 800 at the Games. Coaches celebrated wildly in the stands.
“I had no idea I was gonna do that, honestly,” Finke said.
The 21-year-old Finke finished in 7:41.87, just 0.6 off the Olympic record. Paltrinieri took silver (7:42.11), while Romanchuk took bronze (7:42.33).