Phelps vs. shark: The race is on

Michael Phelps is known as the fastest man in water. The now-retired Olympian holds 39 world records and 23 gold medals to prove it. At times the lovable Phelps seems like an aquatic superhuman.

But, can this superhuman athlete compete with one of the animal kingdom’s fiercest (and most terrifying) swimmers? We will soon find out.

Phelps is set to race a great white shark. Yep, you heard that right. The swimmer will take on the ocean’s most dangerous predator in a head-to-head battle that is set to air on the Discovery Channel this week. So, if you thought you’d already seen Phelps’ last race, think again.

“Phelps Vs. Shark: Great Gold Vs. Great White” will feature as part of the channel’s infamous Shark Week. According to an official press release from the Discovery Channel announcing the big race:

“They are one of the fastest and most efficient predators on the planet: Sharks. He is our greatest champion to ever get in the water: Michael Phelps. 39 world records. 23 Olympic golds. But he has one competition left to win. An event so monumental no one has ever attempted it before. The world’s most decorated athlete takes on the ocean’s most efficient predator: Phelps V Shark – the race is on!”

It sounds like Phelps has his work cut out for him. Great white sharks are built for speed and can reach speeds of up to 35 mph. Meanwhile, ESPN reports that Phelps’ fastest swim clocked in at 6 mph. But, leave it to Phelps to overcome those stats.

According to his Instagram, he is already sizing up the competition.

Be sure to tune in on Sunday, July 23 at 8 pm EST to catch the heart-pounding action. We’re giving a slight edge to the shark, but if there’s anyone with a fighting chance of proving us wrong, it’s most definitely Phelps.