By PAUL NEWBERRY, Associated Press
BARCELONA, Spain (AP) — Missy Franklin has claimed her third gold medal of the world swimming championships with a victory in the 200-meter freestyle.
Franklin gave up her bid to win eight golds in Barcelona, scratching the 50 back so she could focus on the 200 free. That decision paid off Wednesday night when she touched first in 1 minute, 54.81 seconds.
Italy's Federica Pelligrini took the silver, 0.33 behind the winner, and France's Camille Muffat claimed bronze.
Muffat went out hard, leading after the first lap and 0.75 under the world-record pace. But Franklin edged ahead at the midway point and held off a hard-charging Pelligrini at the end.
It was the most significant freestyle win of Franklin's career. She was fourth in the 200 free at the London Olympics.