Michael Phelps Raced a Computer Generated Great White Shark and Lost

credit: YouTube

It's officially Shark Week, and Michael Phelps kicked off the greatest aquatic week of the year by racing a great white shark. Sort of.

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Phelps Vs Shark: Great Gold Vs Great White aired on The Discovery Channel on Sunday night, and it pretty much went as expected.

The 28-time Olympic medalist swam 100 meters in the open waters of Cape Town, South Africa against a great white, and he came in second by just two seconds. Since Phelps' top speed is around 6 mph, and a great white's speed can reach up to 25 mph, Phelps was able to even the playing field a bit by wearing a wetsuit and a monofin to emulate a shark's tail.

But the fastest human swimmer in the world is no match to a great white shark, as it turns out.

As exciting as it would be to see Phelps actually race a great white side-by-side, he wasn't too keen on, you know, getting eaten. So, Phelps raced a computer generated great white, not an actual great white.

See? Probably not the safest situation.

The Discovery Channel folks calculated a great white's speed over 100 meters before the race, then superimposed it into the water next to Phelps as he swam in the frigid waters. But hey, it was still entertaining.

Here's the "race" in its entirety:

For eight glorious days, you'll be able to watch Shark Week episodes on the Discovery Channel. All hail Shark Week!

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