U.S. President Barack Obama is proving to be a swimming fan.
Less than a day after sending out a rare personal tweet to congratulate the most decorated Olympic athlete ever, Obama called Michael Phelps on the pool deck to hail his performance.
Phelps, still reeling from the previous day’s tweet, described the call as “pretty cool”.
“I answered the phone and the voice said ‘Michael?’ ‘Yes.’ ‘Please hold for the President of the United States,” he told reporters on Thursday, after qualifying for the 100 metres butterfly semi-final.
“I was like, ‘wow’.”
Maybe it’s because they’ve learned to live life that bit faster, maybe it’s because they’re doing it for someone they love; in the Olympic cycling time trial, being a mother is no obstacle to getting on the podium.
The American winner, Kristin Armstrong, retired from competitive cycling in 2009 to have a baby.
Few people doubted that she would get back on her bike, though some might have doubted she would get back to exactly where she left off, winning her second straight Olympic time trial gold on Wednesday at age 38.
And Russia’s Olga Zabelinskaya, whose bronze was her second after Sunday’s road race, has two small boys at home of barely school age.
How do they manage it?
“My son has given me balance,” Armstrong said. “I can stop thinking about cycling.”
Germany’s Kerstin Thiele reacts after defeating China’s Chen Fei in their women’s -70kg semi-final B judo match at the London 2012 Olympic Games August 1, 2012. [REUTERS/Darren Staples & Kim Kyung Hoon]
FULL COVERAGE: The London 2012 Olympic Games