Swimming legend Michael Phelps’ return to the sport is clearly not going as per plan, with the 29-year-old currently excluded from the USA swim team for the World Championships in Russia and the Pan-American Games in Toronto later this year after he was found guilty for a drunken-driving offence in September last year.
However, Cathy Bennett, Phelps’ first swim instructor, has no doubt he can make it to the team for the 2016 Olympics to be held at Rio de Janeiro.
“He will give his 150 per cent. If the past proves true, he can achieve great things. He’ll be a leader,” said Bennett, who was in the city on Saturday to launch the Michael Phelps Swimming programme — a grassroot-level swimming programme for enthusiasts of all ages and abilities.
Phelps won an unprecedented 22 Olympic medals, including 18 golds, and is widely regarded as the best swimmer of all time.
“I’ve known Michael since he was four. He is a fierce competitor. His biggest asset is his ability to adjust in the pool; he works really hard and completely understands water.