Discovery Channel pits Michael Phelps against (CGI) great white in Shark Week promo

Michael Phelps preps for a shark race

Michael Phelps, record holding US swimmer with 23 Olympic gold medals to his name, has (sort of) raced a Great White shark to in a promotion with the Discovery Channel.

The 23-times gold medalist failed to outpace the shark on a 100-metre stretch but only by two seconds. Some viewers expressed disappointment that the Great White was in actual fact a CGI effect based on the recorded swimming speed of the shark.

Scientist Tristan Gutteridge said during the show: “Clearly, we can’t put Michael in one lane and a white shark on the far lane. We’re gonna have to do a simulation.”

Phelps, who wore a specially-fitted shark swim cut complete with a fin, said: “‘Honestly, the first thought that went through my head when I saw the shark, there’s probably very little chance for me to beat him.

“They swim so fast, it's almost like a bullet. I don't like taking silver medals but I'll take one against a Great White.”

The stunt was conducted at Mossel Bay, South Africa.

It comes after Ryan Lochte also helped promote the show with an ad showing him boating in dangerous waters.

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