Exhale

Michael Phelps will race a Great White shark just because he can

Only in America.

Since winning all the gold medals isn’t enough, super Olympian Michael Phelps has decided to prove himself once again.

But instead of thrashing humans in a swimming race, Phelps has decided to take on a much more dangerous opponent: A Great White shark.

In a press release last Thursday, the Discovery Channel revealed that the race will feature during Shark Week this year, and air on July 23rd:

They are one of the fastest and most efficient predators on the planet: Sharks. He is our greatest champion to ever get in the water: Michael Phelps. 39 world records. 23 Olympic golds. But he has one competition left to win. An event so monumental no one has ever attempted it before. The world’s most decorated athlete takes on the ocean’s most efficient predator: Phelps V Shark – the race is on!

At this stage, the details about how they will race is still unclear. But that hasn’t stopped Twitter from speculating:

It’s safe to say that Phelps will be in a cage for the duration of the race. In an Instagram post from last week, the swimming legend pretty much confirmed that when he shared this pic of a recent cage dive he had done.

Looking at the numbers, Phelps won’t have much of a chance. Phelps’ top speed in the water is just under 10 kilometres an hour and A Great White can manage up to 40 kilometres an hour.

There are other factors in play though. The shark might waste time trying to bust into the cage and grabbing the human snack that is swimming along beside him.

Maybe Phelps should wear one of the wetsuits designed by Aussie tech company Shark Mitigation Systems. At least then if something does go wrong, the shark will have trouble seeing him.

About the author

Stefan is an Adelaide-based freelance writer. In his spare time, he plays tennis badly, collects vinyl and brushes up on his Mandarin. Follow Stefan on Twitter

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