17 Apr 2015

Phelps victorious after ban

7:15 pm on 17 April 2015
Michael Phelps intends to be back in the pool in Rio de Janiero.

Michael Phelps intends to be back in the pool in Rio de Janiero. Photo: Photosport

The Olympic swimming champion Michael Phelps has made a victorious return to the pool

winning the 100 metres butterfly in Mesa, Arizona, in his first race back after a six-month ban following a drunk driving conviction.

Phelps, eyeing a possible return to the Olympics at the 2016 Rio Games, set the fastest time in the heats with 52.92 seconds and comfortably won the final in 52.38 ahead of longtime rival Ryan Lochte (53.11).

The 18-times Olympic gold medalist was happy to be back in competition but realised he had room to improve as his time was outside the world's top 10.

"Being the first race back, I think it's okay, probably some things to fix," he said. "But I think it's a good starting point.

Phelps is also entered the 100 metre backstroke and 400 freestyle, and in the 200 individual medley and 100 freestyle.