BALTIMORE, Md. (WJZ)– 18-time Olympic gold medalist, Michael Phelps, may be preparing to dive back into competition. This, just months after being arrested for drinking and driving.
Jess Kartalija has the details.
The last time Michael Phelps competed in Phoenix he had announced he was coming out of retirement.
Now, WJZ has learned he is headed to Arizona to compete for the first time since his arrest for DUI.
Phelps was arrested after weaving in and out of traffic in the Ft. McHenry Tunnel.
Phelps pleaded guilty, getting a one year suspension sentence and probation, no jail time.
“The last three months have been the hardest time I have ever gone through,” said Phelps.
“It’s his second DUI in two years. The judge told him, if he does it again, he’ll throw him in jail.”
“Biggest learning experience that I have ever had. Finding out a lot about myself,” said Phelps.
USA Swimming barred him from swimming-sanction events for six months, making Phelps in-eligible to compete in the 2015 World Championships.
Phelps went through a treatment program in Arizona and has joined Alcoholics Anonymous.
His fans want to see him back.
“I think it’s tremendous. He is only 30-years-old and a natural athlete, should take advantage of his gift and go for it,” said one fan.
“I will continue to grow from this and continue on my path to recovery. The next few years are going to be very challenging and I’m pleased and happy I have the great support I have around me,” Phelps said.
Phelps has not said whether he will compete in the 2016 Olympics in Rio.
The Arena Pro Swim Series in Arizona starts April 15th.