American swimmer Bobby Finke had a stunning come-from-behind victory that shocked even his teammate

American Bobby Finke celebrates after winning gold at Tokyo 2020.
Bobby Finke. ODD ANDERSEN/AFP via Getty Images
  • The American swimmer Bobby Finke pulled off a stunning upset in the 800-meter freestyle in Tokyo.

  • Finke stormed from behind in the final 50 meters to steal gold in his only race of the Olympics.

  • Caeleb Dressel watched in shock at the comeback from the practice pool.

  • Visit Insider's homepage for more stories.

The American swimmer Bobby Finke stormed from behind in the final 50 meters of the men's 800-meter freestyle on Wednesday night to take an unlikely gold medal.

Finke, 21, spent most of the race trailing Italy's Gregorio Paltrinieri, who jumped out to an early lead.

But as the race closed through the final 50 meters, Finke hit the afterburners, turning in a stunning split of 26.39 seconds before touching the wall first.

In the final seconds of a race that had pushed athletes to the brink for 800 meters, Finke was moving like a sprint racer.

Looking at how far back Finke was at the final turn, his comeback looks only more improbable. Somehow, he was able to claw the leaders back in the pool to take gold.

Watching from the practice pool, Finke's teammate Caeleb Dressel, a fellow Florida Gators swimmer, looked on in awe.

Dressel surely has a lot of faith in his teammate, but even he couldn't hold back his shock at the result.

Finke came to Tokyo to swim in one event, and after a dazzling finish, he took gold. Tough to do better than that.

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