updated 8/14/2008 10:53:44 PM ET 2008-08-15T02:53:44

Michael Phelps won his sixth gold medal of the Beijing Olympics on Friday in record time, defeating rivals Laszlo Cseh and teammate Ryan Lochte in the 200-meter individual medley.

Phelps defended his title from four years ago in Athens, winning in 1 minute, 54.23 seconds and lowering his own world record of 1:54.80 set at last month’s U.S. trials. It was the American’s sixth world mark in Beijing.

Cseh of Hungary took the silver in 1:56.52, his third runner-up finish to Phelps in these games.

Lochte earned the bronze in 1:56.53, 29 minutes after he upset defending champion Aaron Peirsol to win the 200 back.

It was the 21st world record set during the swimming competition.

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