What a kickoff to Shark Week! Could the most decorated Olympian of all time keep up with a great white shark?
….well, the answer is no. But it WAS close.
To help launch the 2017 edition of Discovery Channel’s annual Shark Week on Sunday, 23-time Olympic gold medal swimmer Michael Phelps finally met his match, losing the made-for-television race against a shark. There was plenty of buildup for the event, and the scientists on Discovery Channel spent ample time explaining just how fast sharks truly are. For his part, Phelps was equipped with a wetsuit and monofin to mimic the shark’s movement through water.
In the end, Phelps swam a 100m stretch of warm Bahamas water in 38.1 seconds, but lost out by two seconds to a great white shark swimming the same course. It became apparent eventually that the race was actually a simulation and Phelps was competing against a computer-generated image of the shark based on a projection of its speed. Still – awfully nifty idea, and pretty cool to watch. Check it out… ~ Jason