Exciting news: gold medal swimmer Tyler Clary, who once claimed he worked harder than genetic freak Michael Phelps, found a new way to remain our least favorite U.S. Olympian this week when he turned down the President and First Lady’s invitation to join them and the rest of Team USA at the White House Friday morning. Instead, he’ll be playing around with race cars in Fontana, Calif., according to TMZ.
The London 200m backstroke champ is apparently looking ahead to a career beyond swimming and has hopes of becoming a professional driver on either the NASCAR or IndyCar circuit. Rumors are he’s attracted suitors and he’ll be test driving cars around the track for a few days, and then he’ll stick around to catch the MAVTV 500 IndyCar event Saturday.
Guess we can’t really be mad at the guy for making a career decision, but we live in a world where you don’t say no to the President. We’d almost understand if he did it because of his belief in Mitt Romney’s platform, but regardless, you probably can’t drive 200mph around the track every day, so it’s an opportunity one shouldn’t pass up. Just know that Phelps can probably do it better with way less effort involved.
We already knew Katie Ledecky can beat the boys in practice, even an Olympic champion.
One of the many takeaways from this week’s Sports Illustrated profile of Ledecky is that she has beaten 11-time Olympic medalist Ryan Lochte in practice.
Ledecky and Lochte may rep different swim clubs — Ledecky in Washington, D.C., and Lochte in Charlotte — but they both take trips to the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colo., for altitude training.
“She swims like a guy,” Lochte said after training with Ledecky in Colorado Springs in March, according to SI. “I’ve never seen a female swimmer like that. … Her times are becoming good for a guy. She’s beating me now, and I’m like, What’s going on?”
When Ledecky broke the women’s 1500m freestyle world record for the third time at the August 2014 Pan Pacific Championships, her time of 15:28.36 was .01 faster than Lochte’s 1500m free time at the 2004 U.S. Olympic Trials (one of the rare instances Lochte swam a 1500m free).
Ledecky has since re-broken the women’s 1500m free world record twice more, bringing it down to 15:25.48.
“I trained with her in Colorado once, and she made me look like I was stopping,” Lochte reportedly told media on his 31st birthday, Aug. 3 at the World Championships in Kazan, Russia. “She flew by me.”
MORE: Shirley Babashoff bows to Katie Ledecky
Athens Olympic softball champion Jennie Finch will manage the Bridgeport Bluefish, an independent minor-league baseball team on Sunday and, reportedly, become the first woman to manage a men’s pro baseball team.
Finch, a pitcher, retired from softball in 2010, two years after her sport’s Olympic farewell in Beijing, where she and the U.S. took silver behind Japan.
Finch has been an advocate for softball’s return to the Olympics, which could happen in Tokyo 2020.
The International Olympic Committee is expected to decide in August if baseball and softball, among four other sports, will be added for the Tokyo Games.
Finch, who is married to former MLB pitcher Casey Daigle, is also known for having struck out Albert Pujols.
MORE: Jennie Finch, Lisa Fernandez weigh in on Mo’ne Davis