Adam Peaty looked down at his gold medal and then turned his eyes to the heavens. Relieved and jubilant in equal measure, the mighty swimmer had secured his place among all the greatest British Olympians who went before.
He thumped his hands through the water in delight. He sat on a lane rope, as he did in Rio, emotional yet still wearing the animalistic mask of competitiveness that had not yet given way to the warmer, down-to-earth character he saves for when he's not working.
By winning the 100m breaststroke, the 26-year-old became the first Briton to win two successive gold medals in the pool. It was instructive to observe the aura of this master. Pre-race, his name was called and in he walked, a towel around his neck.
Adam Peaty has joined the pantheon of great British Olympians after another gold medalInsurance Loans Mortgage Attorney Credit Lawyer
The 100m breaststroke star has a place in history after successive Olympic golds in the pool
At 6ft 3in and 13st 7lb of near pure muscle, a serious expression across his face, tattoos down both arms, he seemed as big and fierce as Typhon.
The supporting cast might have been off to the abattoir rather than their blocks. Everyone is diminished to the rank of a stat in the shadow of the Uttoxeter-born star.
It is hard to think of many sportsmen Britain has sent to an Olympic Games who have so entirely dominated their field for so long. Daley Thompson, the great decathlete who went undefeated from 1978 to 1987, is one of very few. To be mentioned in the same breath as him adds a line to Peaty's glory.
He is undefeated in seven years, has broken the world record on five occasions and has swum the 17 fastest times in history. Nobody is within one second of his personal best.
He has taken the world record through the 58sec barrier. Then through 57sec. His current world record stands at 56.88sec but that is not the summit of his ambition.
He is working on his self-styled 'Project Immortal' push for improvement and who can say he won't touch the wall for the last time having recorded a figure starting with 55. And to think that only Monday's runner-up Arno Kamminga has ever breached 58sec!
Peaty dominated the field again to remain king of the pool and take Team GB's first gold medalInsurance Loans Mortgage Attorney Credit Lawyer
To expose Peaty's achievements to context is to laud them more. Adrian Moorhouse swam 1min 2.04sec to win gold in Seoul 1988. Even in a sport that doesn't allow the ink to dry on its