Michael Phelps was such a dominant and impressive performer at the 2004 Games that it is easy to overlook some other spectacular performances in the pool in Athens. The leading women's swimmer also came from the USA, and she went home with a haul of five medals, at the age of just 21. Natalie Coughlin was a natural, who had started swimming when she was just 10 months old. She was strong across all strokes, once qualifying for a national tournament in all 14 of the events contested, and she broke the junior national record in the individual medley. However, it was in the backstroke that she truly excelled.