Phelps to return in NC

May 5, 2009 10:57:29 AM PDT
Olympic champion Michael Phelps suspension is over and he will return to competition for the first time at a race in North Carolina.He'll appear the Charlotte UltraSwim on May 14-17.

Phelps was suspended from competition by USA Swimming for three months in February after a picture surfaced in a London tabloid showing him inhaling from a marijuana pipe.

It was a low point after winning eight gold medals at the Beijing Olympics.

Tuesday, he marked the occasion like any other day: He woke up late and headed to the pool.

Speaking exclusively with The Associated Press, Phelps said he didn't even realize his suspension ended Tuesday.

Coach Bob Bowman couldn't resist making a joke, saying he planned to enter his star swimmer in a meet later that night.