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Bobby Finke Stuns Field to Take Unexpected Gold in 800-Meter Free

Bobby Finke—a name that will go down in Team USA Olympics history. 

The 21-year-old from the University of Florida came from behind in the final 50 meters to win the first-ever men’s 800-meter freestyle at the Games. For much of the distance race, Finke hung just outside of medal positions. However, he quickly jumped from fifth to first in the final stretch. 

He finished 7:41.87, just 0.6 off the Olympic record. Ukraine's Mykhailo Romanchuk was the favorite for the event, but he will be taking home bronze with a time of 7:42.33. Italy’s Gregorio Paltrinieri took silver. 

Despite the Italian having one of the 10 best times in history prior to the Games, Paltrinieri struggled in Tokyo, ending up in one of the outside lanes for the final. He had an early lead, which he held most of the race. 

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