Michael Phelps’ sexy new Louis Vuitton ads may land the swimmer in some hot water, due to IOC regulations about promoting non-Olympic sponsors.
Photos of Phelps taken by Annie Leibovitz were leaked online late last week, violating the International Olympic Committee’s controversial Rule 40.
This provision bars athletes from promoting non-Olympic sponsors from July 18 through August 15. The Michael Phelps Louis Vuitton pic leaked August 13.
Michael Phelps with Larisa Latynina, the previous record holder.
Punishments for the rule range from fines to a stripping of medals … but is there any chance that Phelps could actually lose his record medal haul?
Highly doubtful. If it’s unclear who leaked the photos, it’s very tough to make a case that Phelps should be punished for the Louis Vuitton campaign.
A campaign that was supposed to begin August 16, in compliance with the rule.
Pictures not meant for public consumption get leaked all the time … as Phelps knows all too well after the embarrassing ones of him smoking pot.
Louis Vuitton denied releasing the photographs, as did Phelps’ camp. That should be enough for the Olympic legend to avoid any ramifications.
Even the hardass IOC wouldn’t mess with the greatest ever, right? We’d hope so anyway. The guy has 22 medals! And Megan Rossee! Bow down.