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Japanese swimmers given green light to use Speedo LZR Racer

Japanese swimmers given green light to use Speedo LZR Racer

The Japan Swimming Federation will allow its swimmers to wear Speedo's LZR Racer at the Beijing Olympics.
"In order to get the best results in Beijing we took into account the opinions of the athletes and the coaches," said JSF vice chairman Kazuo Sano said Tuesday. "Based on that input we have decided to let the athletes choose their swimsuits."
Kosuke Kitajima, who won the 100- and 200-meter breaststroke at the 2004 Olympics, set a world record in the Speedo suit in the men's 200 breaststroke on Sunday at the Japan Open.
Kitajima finished in 2 minutes, 07.51 seconds, taking almost a second off the previous mark set by American Brendan Hansen in 2006.
A total of 16 national records were broken by swimmers wearing the Speedo LZR racer at the Japan Open, prompting Japanese swimming officials to give Japan's swimmers the freedom to choose their swimsuits for Beijing.
Japanese swimmers were contracted to wear other suits under a domestic sponsorship agreement but Tuesday's decision by the JSF will give the swimmers freedom of choice.
Since the high-tech Speedo suit was introduced in February, dozens of world records have been set.
Last month, three Japanese sportswear makers, including Mizuno, introduced new versions of high-tech swimsuits intended to compete with Speedo's suit for Beijing. The LZR and others versions have been approved by FINA, swimming's world governing body, for use at the Olympics.


Updated : 2021-05-11 05:54 GMT+08:00