Michael Phelps hails Adam Peaty's Rio gold as 'one of the grossest swims I have ever seen'

Michael Phelps - Michael Phelps hails Adam Peaty's Rio performance as one of the best he's ever seen
Michael Phelps is the most decorated Olympian of all time Credit: AP

Michael Phelps, the most decorated Olympian in history, has heralded Adam Peaty’s performance in the final of the 4x100 metres medley relay as “one of the grossest swims I have ever seen”.

In this case, “grossest” was American jock-speak for “best”, but the fact that such a tribute came from the mouth of Phelps was testament to the British swimmer’s extraordinary gifts.

While the Baltimore phenomenon has won 23 Olympic golds to Peaty’s one, he sees in the 21-year-old from Derby an ability that defies belief.

Adam Peaty competes in the Men's 100m Breaststroke final in Rio  Credit: PA

At the Rio Olympics, Peaty, fresh from setting a world record in the 100 metres breaststroke, swam his leg of the relay in a staggering 56.59sec, fully two seconds faster than his nearest rival. 

Phelps, the recipient of a lifetime achievement award presented by former adversary Ian Thorpe, said: “I’m just happy that I wasn’t racing against him. I said to Thorpe, ‘Peaty did 56.5?’ It was one of the grossest swims I’ve ever seen. 

“You’re going 56 seconds in breaststroke? Are you kidding me? It’s really fun watching these young kids coming up, achieving their goals and dreams. Now I would love to see him swim the 200m breastroke, too.”