For the past few days, I have been following Michael Phelps' journey of breaking Mark Spitz's record number of gold medals in a single Olympiad. And I must admit that the final of the Men's 4x100m freestyle relay event was the most exciting so far.

I even have the video clip of this race (scroll down below). On clip you could see that Cullen Jones was nowhere to be found after Jason Lezak, the fourth and final swimmer of the US relay team, sealed their sweetest victory.

I was checking my email when a news entitled "The Mystery of the Disappearance of Cullen Jones" by Chris Chase caught my attention. Here is Chris' answer to this mystery:

The Mystery of the Disapperance of Cullen Jones
By Chris Chase

Posted Tuesday, Aug 12, 2008 11:55 am EDT on Yahoo! Sports.

The pictures of Michael Phelps and Garrett Weber-Gale celebrating their improbable win in the 4x100 freestyle relay were splashed across newspapers and websites around the world yesterday. But there was somebody conspicuous in his absence from all the immediate reaction shots.

Where was Cullen Jones? The third swimmer in the United States' world record setting 4x100 team, Jones was nowhere to be seen in the aftermath of Jason Lezak's stunning anchor leg. Every picture and video shot includes only Phelps and Weber-Gale; Jones was AWOL. Eventually, he joined the celebration, but where was he during that thrilling finish? I've heard that question three times over the past 36 hours, so this morning, Fourth-Place Medal's crack investigative unit, which yesterday uncovered the mystery of the hot Paraguayan, got on the case.

After breaking down the last moments of the race like the Zapruder film, it becomes clear that Jones wasn't with his teammates because he had run to the side of the pool to get a better angle to view the touch. Look for Jones at the bottom-left of the picture, leaning over at the finish line. He's immediately to the right of the WR/OR graphic.

During an interview on the Today show, Jones said that he didn't remember walking away from the starting area, only that he was so dizzy after his race he could barely stand up. After looking at the finish, Jones stared at the scoreboard for a few seconds to confirm what he had seen. When he realized he and his relay teammates had just capped one of the most improbable comebacks in Olympic history, he began celebrating... alone.

Mystery: solved.

Check other articles by Chris Chase such as "The Mystery of the Hot Paraguayan" and "The Mystery of the Showering Divers" by clicking these titles.


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