Requested how clear he thinks the Video games would be the 23-time Olympic gold medalist bluntly advised CNN Sport’s Don Riddell: “4 or 5” out of 10.
“I can truthfully say that all through my complete total profession, I do not know if I ever competed in a clear discipline,” added Phelps.
“If that is the case, then yeah, I do not assume something’s modified.
“I feel there’s a number of points on the market and the truth that we’re not held on the identical taking part in discipline is actually upsetting.”
This yr marked the eight-year-anniversary of the 2012 Olympics in London, the place Phelps gained 4 gold medals.
These Video games have been described because the dirtiest Olympics in historical past, with greater than 130 athletes banned or disqualified for doping offenses, in accordance with Olympedia.
Phelps, who was outspoken on drug cheats all through his profession, says he can “assure” no athlete has been examined as a lot as he was on an Olympic stage and insists everybody needs to be held to the identical excessive requirements.
“If we’re all getting examined like that, nice, however I do know we’re not,” added the 35-year-old. “Till we’re, till we’re all held on the identical stage, nothing’s going to alter.”
The Worldwide Olympic Committee (IOC), which oversees the drug testing on the Video games, has maintained that preventing for clear sport is amongst its prime priorities.
CNN reached out to the World Anti-Doping Company which referred it to the IOC. The IOC was not instantly obtainable for a response to Phelps’ remarks.
Named after whistleblower Dr. Grigory Rodchenkov, who helped expose the Russian doping scandal, the act handed by the senate unopposed in November.
“Doping will stay an unlimited downside within the Olympics till dopers and their enablers face jail time for defrauding different athletes,” Jim Walden, creator of the Rodchenkov Anti-Doping Act and lawyer for Rodchenkov, advised CNN Sport on Friday.
“The Rodchenkov Anti-Doping Act, simply signed into regulation within the U.S. on December 4, 2020, is the required first step. Now the Division of Justice should create an formidable program to implement it, and provides it enamel. If DOJ does this rapidly, I feel we’ll have a cleaner Olympics.”
‘It is good to see change’
Whereas Phelps hopes for a cleaner Olympics, he additionally thinks the Tokyo Video games will likely be an opportunity for athletes to face up for what they imagine in.
The IOC is presently consulting the group’s Athletes’ Fee earlier than deciding whether or not to chill out its stance towards protests.
The session took place following the rise in sports activities stars taking a stand towards racism, particularly for the reason that Black Lives Matter motion gained momentum after the loss of life of George Floyd.
For instance, English Premier League groups started taking a knee forward of each sport in opposition to systemic racism and NBA groups staged a walkout throughout the playoffs to protest police brutality after the taking pictures of Jacob Blake.
The US Olympic and Paralympic Committee (USOPC) just lately introduced that they won’t sanction Workforce USA athletes for peaceable protests throughout the Video games.
“I really feel like I’ve a platform to face and to speak concerning the issues that I really feel like are essential,” mentioned Phelps.
“I additionally really feel like all people has that chance. All of us have the chance to face and shout our values.
“It is good to see this, it is good to see change and I feel we’ve to undergo comfy and uncomfortable instances with a purpose to see the change that we would like in the long term.
“This yr has been scary. It has been scary. It has been overwhelming. However I really feel like this yr, I feel we have discovered rather a lot about every part and hopefully, we’re in a position to catapult this into making vital change and never solely within the US however worldwide.”
Phelps says he would not be shocked to see athletes protest on the rostrum both means however simply hopes they achieve this respectfully.
“The best half is standing on the medal podium, listening to your nationwide anthem play with a medal round your neck. There isn’t any higher factor that I can say in sports activities that I’ve ever skilled,” he mentioned.
“So if anyone is on the market and they’re doing that, I simply say be respectful as a result of, , for me, I am a proud American, and standing on that, representing my nation, that was one thing that was an incredible honor.”
‘I simply do not see the way it can occur’
He mentioned he additionally nervous for these athletes who had been getting ready for the Video games in 2020, solely to be advised they’d have to attend one other yr.
Organizers have mentioned they’re assured the postponed Video games will go forward subsequent yr, however Phelps is not sure concerning the logistics of internet hosting such a large-scale occasion throughout such unsure instances.
“The actual fact that you’ll put ten thousand plus athletes, plus all of the volunteers, plus all of the coaches, it does not make sense to me. I simply do not see the way it can occur,” he mentioned.
“However fingers crossed that every part with vaccines and every part goes easily on that entrance. However, I imply, I do not know, there’s simply an excessive amount of unknown.”
Phelps was chatting with CNN by his involvement with the Colgate Optimism Mission.