Phelps withdraws from Minnesota Grand Prix event

Lindsay Guentzel

Olympic swimmer Michael Phelps has withdrawn from the Minnesota Grand Prix event, just one day before the three-day event begins.  It would have been his first event since last August, and instead of competing, he has notched his third scratched event of 2010.  Phelps also won the 2008 inaugural Grand Prix event, taking home a $20,000 prize.

Phelps’ decision to withdraw from the competition is not sitting well with swimming fans, who had been counting on his participation in the first Grand Prix event of this year, Swim Network’s senior analyst Mike Gustafson said.

USA Swimming, the event’s organizer, reissued its statement on the event today.  Phelps was not listed as a participant, nor was any acknowledgement given to his withdrawal.   

Fellow Olympian Ryan Lochte will be in attendance at this weekend’s competition, as well as Chloe Sutton and former Gopher swimmer David Plummer.

The three day event kicks off Friday at 9 a.m., with preliminary rounds at 9 a.m. on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday and final rounds beginning at 6 p.m. on Friday and Saturday and 5 p.m. on Sunday.