Adam Peaty still to achieve 'dream' swim despite world record-breaking domination
Adam Peaty was on Thursday taking the first of three days off after a "rollercoaster" World Championships featuring two gold medals in Budapest.
Wednesday marked three years to the day since his first major championship title, at the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, and Peaty marked the anniversary by adding the 50 metres breaststroke world gold to the 100m he won on Monday.
Peaty finished in 25.99 seconds, 0.04secs outside his own world record set on Tuesday, and returned to the pool little more than an hour later in the 4x100m mixed medley relay.
But even the presence of the talisman could not propel Britain to the podium as the United States won gold in a world record. Britain were fifth in the event which was recently added to the Olympic programme.
Adam Peaty of Great Britain celebrates after winning the gold medal during the Men's 50m Breaststroke final on day thirteen of the Budapest 2017 FINA World Championships on July 26, 2017 in Budapest, Hungary.Getty Images
Peaty will hope for another podium place in the men's 4x100m medley relay on Sunday's final day of competition at the Duna Arena on the banks of the Danube.
And his confidence is high after recording the three quickest 50m in history and the second fastest 100m time, second only to his Olympic-winning swim of 57.13. 'Project 56', swimming 100m under 57 seconds, is on.
"These last four days have been very, very hard work," the 22-year-old Uttoxeter swimmer said.
"I've been on a rollercoaster of emotions - world records at the top and then trying to get myself grounded for the next race. I'm over the moon with my performances - 57.4, the second fastest in history. It gives me confidence that I can one day go 56. That dream now is burning more alive than ever."
Peaty now has five world golds in his career, more than any other Briton, earning four individually and one from a relay success two years ago. David Wilkie, another breaststroke swimmer, is next best, having won three world titles in 1973 and 1975.
His global domination began in Glasgow, when he won 100m breaststroke gold, before adding the European title the following month, world golds over 50m and 100m in 2015 - successes he replicated here - and European and Olympic glory in 2016.
Peaty said: "My main aim when I won Commonwealths, even though I was a young, skinny kid, was to try to take on the world - 'Can I win all the grand slams in two years?'.
"I didn't even think about world records. I just wanted those four titles within two years. Now I've done that. I've had an extra year now, got 16 international gold medals with all the world records."
Peaty's double and Ben Proud's 50m butterfly success on Monday mean Britain have three gold medals from the 17th World Championships.
More medals could follow on Thursday's fifth day of competition.
Georgia Davies advanced to the 50m backstroke final in fourth place, Max Litchfield progressed to the 200m individual medley final in third place and Duncan Scott qualified for the 100m freestyle final in sixth.