Watch Prince William and Michael Phelps Bond Over Fatherhood
After Phelps cemented his title as history’s greatest Olympian this year, collecting five more gold medals (for a grand total of 23!) in Rio, he was honored with the Lifetime Achievement Award at the BBC Sports Personality of the Year event in Birmingham, England.
Presenting the honor was none other than Prince William and fellow swimmer Ian Thorpe. On stage, the royal lauded Phelps’s accomplishments in the pool.
“It’s also a particular privilege to be here tonight Michael to give you your Lifetime Achievement Award,” he said. “You’re one of the greatest sporting icons the world has ever had. Your 23 gold medals, never mind all the other colors, pales into sheer superhuman history. You should be so proud of your achievements and it will be many many years, if ever before anyone stands here again and calls you the greatest athlete in history so many many congratulations and hopefully your retirement gives somebody else the chance now.”
During the event, Phelps and his new wife, Nicole, had a chance to talk to William off stage. The two told William that their trip across the pond was the first time they had traveled without their 7-month-old son, Boomer.
“Oh, I see why the retirement is looming,” William joked after asking Boomer’s age. “You’ll never leave the house again!”
They also discussed the weather (cold in London, warm in the Phelps’s home state of Arizona), proving that no matter who you are — a royal, an Olympian, or just one of the masses, we all engage in the same small talk.