American swimmer Michael Phelps Facebooked live en route to the opening ceremonies at the 2016 Rio Olympic Games.
Phelps was this week named as the American flag-bearer as Team USA walks into the Maracaña Stadium to officially kick off the Games, though some of the soccer competition has already begun. In the video he showed off the light-up jacket that he will wear during the ceremony (activated by a button built into a sleeve).
Phelps and Gunnar Bentz are among the few swimmers (the only in the video) who will be marching. With swimming competition beginning so early, on Saturday, it’s common for medal-contending swimmers to skip the opening ceremonies because of the toll that being on their feet for so long can take upon the athletes.
Phelps initially said he wouldn’t march, though he left a crack in that with a caveat for “unless selected as flag bearer.” This will be the first time he’s marched in the opening ceremonies. His first race won’t come until Sunday night when he swims the final of the 400 free relay. Bentz doesn’t swim until Tuesday morning, when he presumably will race in the heats of the men’s 800 free relay.
Posted by Michael Phelps on Friday, August 5, 2016