Phelps already eyeing more gold in London
OLYMPICS: LONDON, Aug 30, 2008; - US swimming sensation Michael
Phelps warned Sunday that he is already eyeing more gold at the London
Games in 2012.
Phelps became the most decorated medallist in Olympic history with 14
gold medals from Beijing and Athens, including a record eight gold in
China, the most by an athlete at any single Games.
Michael Phelps - the US swimming sensation who had a record haul
of eight Gold in China - the most by any single competitor, is
preparing for the challenge of the London Games in four years
But rather than sitting back and enjoying his achievements, the
23-year-old from Baltimore is already preparing himself for the
challenge of the London Games in four years time.
And after arriving in London for the Olympic handover party he
explained how he was hoping to take his swimming skills to another
level, including tackling new events such as the backstroke.
“Olympic athletes dream of being part of the Olympics every four
years,” he said. “Right after the Olympics are over, our mindset is
already focused on the next four years and what we can do to change how
we prepare and try some new things and that’s something I’m looking
forward to now.
“I still have things that I want to do in the sport, I’ve never
competed over here in London and I’m looking forward to really
experiencing more of the city and be able to prepare myself to hopefully
swim some fast times.
“I’ve no idea what I’m really going to do but I’m looking forward to
trying some new events and swimming some events that I haven’t really
had the opportunity to swim since my schedule is always so crowded,”
“I’ve never really swum the backstroke or the 100m freestyle at a
major international competition so Bob (Bowman), my coach, is going to
throw everything he has ever done coaching me out of the door and try
something completely different just to see how it works.
“No breaststroke, no distance swimming, no open water - at least
those guys will still be my friends,” said Phelps.
“I’m excited for the next four years and today is the kick-off for
the next four years.
Trying out new things
“We are just trying a bunch of new things and if it’s successful then
great and if not then we can go back to what we were doing. “But I’m
looking forward to having some changes because the last 10 or 15 years
have been the same thing the whole time.
“I’ve got some pretty lofty dreams in my head and those goals are
going to stay there until they are accomplished,” said the American.
But Phelps accepts he faces even tougher challenges to stay at the
top of his sport after his outstanding performances in Beijing. “This
has been one of the hardest things I’ve ever done, to be able to swim 17
times and make sure that I have to be ready to swim at my beat in every
one of those races because I’m competing against people who are focusing
just on that one race.
“I know that it’s not going to be easy getting there and there are
going to be some bumps in the road here and there - but everybody has
bumps in the road and it really just depends on how you get over those
and make sure it doesn’t happen again.
“I don’t think it’s going to be perfect but it’s going to be fun over
the next few years while I finish off my career,” claimed Phelps, who is
adamant London will be his last Olympics.
“I told myself I would never compete past the age of 30.
“I started swimming when I was seven and I told my coach I’m not
swimming past the age of 30 so don’t get any ideas.
“He said ‘That’s good because I don’t want to coach you past the age
“Bob and I have had a great relationship and I wouldn’t trade him for
the world so I’m happy that he’s willing to put up with me for four more