x Abu Dhabi, UAE Friday 21 July 2017

Thorpe to return to Abu Dhabi to step up Olympic bid

The Australian swimmer is to return to the capital to train at the Armed Forces Officers' Club in preparation for London 2012.

Five-time swimming Olympic gold medallist Ian Thorpe, who is returning to Abu Dhabi for training.
Five-time swimming Olympic gold medallist Ian Thorpe, who is returning to Abu Dhabi for training.

Ian Thorpe will return to Abu Dhabi later this year to continue his preparations for the next year’s Olympic Games in London.

The Australian freestyle swimmer, who announced in February he was returning to the sport after retiring in 2006, was in the capital in March to run the rule over the facilities at the Armed Forces Officers’ Clubs, which boasts a 50m Olympic pool.

Thorpe, 28, has continued his preparations in Switzerland and attended the UK royal wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton last month, but plans to return to Abu Dhabi in September with his coaching team to resume training.

Thorpe has won five Olympic gold medals and swimming fans are licking their lips at the potential showdown in London with the recording breaking American Michael Phelps, who Thorpe defeated in the 200m freetstyle at the 2004 Athens Olympics.

gmeenaghan@thenational.ae