After picking up an incredible four different awards at the 2016 Golden Goggles Awards last night, Michael Phelps confirmed that he has taken his name out of the drug-testing pool, making his second retirement official.
When speaking to NBC Olympics’ Nick Zaccardi, Phelps was quoted as saying: “I said to Peter, I was like, get the papers, can we just sign these things, so I don’t have to do the daily updates and everything? That was brutal [the whereabouts system]. It’s good. I’m still in the pool [recreationally]. I’m still not coming back.”
News of a Phelps return sparked in 2013, when he re-entered the drug-testing pool making him eligible to return to racing in 2014 (which he did). Upon re-joining the pool, there is a mandatory nine-month waiting period. Thus, him exiting it now makes it official that he is done for good, and if he did go for another comeback he’d have to go through the mandatory nine-month waiting process. That doesn’t seem to be the case this time, as he seems content in his post-competitive swimming life. Despite this, he did note that he is still swimming three times a week ‘just to stay in decent physical shape’.
After an incredible final Olympics that saw Phelps win five gold medals and one silver, he stole the show at the Golden Goggle Awards. Phelps won Male Athlete of the Year, the Impact Award for lifetime achievement, Male Race of the Year for his triumphant win in the 200 fly, and Relay Race of the Year for the men’s 4×100 free relay. Read a recap of all awards presented here.