The 22-year-old retained his 50 metres freestyle and 100m butterfly
crowns in Gwangju with plenty to spare, before leading the American
mixed 4x100m freestyle team to a new world record for good measure.
"I probably sound like a broken record but every time I race I always
look for the bad," said Dressel, who became the first swimmer to
capture at least six gold medals at two world championships.
"It wasn't easy tonight. I don't want it to be easy, I really don't."
But despite leaving Brazilian Bruno Fratus and Greek Kristian
Gkolomeev for dead in the 50m free, which he won in a championship best
21.04 seconds, Dressel was still fretting about his start.
"It was so bad, I wish I could have that one back," said the tattooed
pin-up, who swept to seven gold medals at the 2017 world championships
"There's a lot of parts of my race that I can improve on," added
Dressel in a comment that will bring a collective gulp from rivals in
the run-up to the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
"I've never had a perfect race in my life and I certainly don't think I will."
In reality, Dressel is beginning to look like Michael Phelps in his pomp.
And, whisper it, maybe even better.
Dressel obliterated Phelps's 10-year-old 100m butterfly world record
in Friday's semi-finals, clocking a jaw-dropping 49.50 seconds to lop
0.32 off the American legend's old bodysuit mark and rob him of a second
world record in 48 hours.
The final was little more
than a formality as Dressel exploded from the blocks in a signature fast
start to win in 49.66 - only the second-quickest swim ever.
"It doesn't just come together by accident," he shrugged. "It's just
about getting in every day and learning event to event, practice to
"But I'm glad it's over - I certainly don't want to swim any more
than this tonight," added Dressel, who could pocket a seventh gold -
and eighth medal of the week - in Sunday's 4x100m mixed medley.
"Tomorrow I will be ready to swim one more, and one more fast."
The only blot on Dressel's copy-book in Gwangju was a silver medal
behind Australia in the 4x100m mixed medley earlier this week.
But in the individual races, the American looks untouchable, also
winning the 50m fly and retaining his title in swimming's blue riband
event, the 100m freestyle.
Dressel's challenge will be to play down the massive expectation on
him to emulate Phelps's record eight gold medals at the 2008 Beijing
Olympics in Tokyo next summer.
"I've never been one to buy into all the hype," he insisted. "It's
really just between myself and my coach and getting ready. But I'll be
ready for it next year."