Sisterhood of Champions

Before they arrived in Athens, the two swimmers were known for their struggles rather than their successes. Petria Thomas, 28, had spent a long stretch of her career wrestling with a body that kept letting her down; if she wasn't recovering from another shoulder reconstruction she was seen as the dependable No. 2, lingering in the shadow of a now-retired rival known as Madame Butterfly. Jodie Henry, 20, was not known outside swimming circles. She, too, had experienced tough times in a short career. Her nerves could reduce the sprinting dynamo to a heaving wreck. But by the end of the...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now

Subscribe
Subscribe

Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on TIME.com

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!