Ian Thorpe first came to International prominence at the 1997 Pan-Pacific meet when he finished second in the 400 freestyle. He was then 14 years old. At the 1998 World Championships he won both the 200 and 400 freestyle, and was the media darling of Australia going into the Sydney 2000 Olympics. He won three gold medals at the 2000 Olympic Games, but his only individual title was in the 400 free, as he finished second in the 200 freestyle. With three relay medals, he won five Olympic medals at the Sydney Games. At the 2001 World Championships, he won the 200, 400 and 800 metre freestyle events, all in world record times, and also swam on three winning relay teams, becoming the first person to win six gold medals at a single World Championship. At the 2002 Pan-Pacific meet, Thorpe won five titles – three individual in the 100, 200, and 400 freestyles, and two relay championships. He has set 13 individual world records (through 2006). Although slightly overshadowed by Michael Phelps, Thorpe won four more Olympic medals at the 2004 Athens Olympics, with golds in the 200 and 400 metre freestyles.