Phelps could be stripped of London medals
After we reported on Michael Phelps’ new ad campaign with French fashion mogul Louis Vuitton, it appears someone may have jumped the gun. According to the International Olympic Committee rulebook, by having the photo leaked, he violated Rule 40 which states that athletes are not allowed to endorse non-Olympic sponsors between the dates of July 18 to Aug. 15. The ad was released online when the Olympics were still taking place in London.
The strict policy states “a competitor or a team may lose the benefit of any ranking obtained in relation to other events at the Olympic Games at which he or it was disqualified or excluded; in such case the medals and diplomas won by him or it shall be returned to the IOC.”
Technically, this means that Phelps could be stripped of his record-breaking medals but it’s not likely. He doesn’t seem to be too worried about it, as he tweeted the photos this afternoon. He also retweeted a paraphrase of the rule that indicates he’s not responsible for the photo leak.
This is not the first time Phelps has been caught in an “oops” online. In 2009, he was in a lot more trouble when was busted on camera smoking pot at a party.
As a public figure in the immediate limelight following the Olympics, of course this is making headlines; it’s still to be seen though whether he will be fined or have his gold medals revoked.