GREEN COVE SPRINGS, FL – Two-time Olympic gold medal-winning swimmer Caeleb Dressel will wear an infamous ‘super suit’ next month in a bid to see how fast man can go in water without restrictions. Dressel, who is widely regarded as the fastest swimmer in the world, broke three world records at the recent International Swimming League finals and will now don the suit in an exhibition event for his sponsors, Speedo. (Subject to COVID-19 restrictions)
He will wear the Speedo LZR Racer suit which was made famous at the 2008 Beijing Olympics when it was worn by 94% of swimmers who won a gold medal. The suit was later outlawed in 2010 by the sport’s governing body, with male swimmers prevented from wearing full body suits and forced to revert to the current knee-length ‘jammer’ shorts.
The Florida-born swimmer currently holds the world record for the 50m freestyle (short course) when posting a time of 20.16 last weekend at the ISL finals in Budapest, which is a quicker time than any swimmer in the infamous LZR Racer suit ever recorded.
In a bid to be at the forefront of innovation within the sport, Dressel and Speedo will now team up to put him through his paces in the suit to experiment and see how fast a modern swimmer can go without constraints.
Dressel also smashed the world record for the 100m individual medley at the International Swimming League earlier this month when he became the first person to break the 50-second barrier in that event.
“I’m looking forward to racing in this historic suit and really excited that Speedo has put this event together. I’m not sure what to expect time wise but I am confident I can put together a well-executed race and we’ll see what happens. I was too young to experience the hype of the LZR Racer, but I feel I am part of it now. Speedo has always been the front runner in swimming and I am always proud to be partnered with a brand that continually pushes the boundaries of innovation.”Speaking about the event, Dressel said.
Gregg Troy, Olympic gold medal-winning coach to Dressel, said: “The Speedo LZR Racer suit was not only an aid to competition but allowed athletes to expand what they thought was possible in the pool. It helped athletes know more about body position, controlling speed and the importance of a strong core. It broke through the glass ceilings over the sport.
“Whenever possible now, we have used opportunities to use these suits in practice sessions so that we can continue to teach the swimmers these same skills. We’re all really excited to see how fast Caeleb can go in this suit and it is another opportunity for him to leave a mark on the sport.”
Rob Hicking, Brand Director at Speedo, added: “The impact of the Speedo LZR Racer suit remains a seminal moment in the world of swimming – known as the ‘Super Suit’ era. We have always been committed to finding an edge for our swimmers and have tried everything from sharkskin modelling to testing alongside NASA in the past 20 years under our Fastskin banner.
“We’ve all seen swimmers get stronger and faster in the water and have only speculated about what could be achieved if technological advances were not restricted. We’re really excited to find out what’s possible. It’s been a tough year for swimmers around the world and so we hope this can provide some inspiration as people start getting back into the pool.”
The event comes as Speedo celebrates its 20th anniversary of its Fastskin swimsuit range. The latest incarnation – Pure Valor and Pure Intent – have been worn for 63% of all world records broken since their launch in 2019.
Speedo will release footage of Dressel’s attempts in a specially-commissioned video which will be published across its social media channels at 9am PST/5pm GMT on December 10th.
About Speedo Fastskin LZR Racer
Launched in February 2008, the LZR Racer suit was a high-tec swimsuit made from 50% polyurethane which caused controversy in 2008 as a series of world records were set by swimmers wearing it.
For three years, Speedo worked with everybody from universities and sporting institutes to NASA scientists to create the LZR Racer, whilst experimenting with over 60 materials.
The result was the LZR Racer which reduced drag, maximised muscle support and helped keep swimmers free in their range of motion.
The suit reduced drag (water resistance) by 38% compared with the ordinary LYCRA suits which were available on the market, resulting in an increase in speedo of approximately 4%.
Hugging the body up to 70 times tighter than other suits the suit was a huge success, with 94% of all swimming golds won at the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games won by athletes wearing the suit.
“I feel like a rocket”, said swimming superstar Michael Phelps, who helped the test the suits and subsequently won an unprecedented eight golds at the Games.
So effective was the LZR Racer that Speedo offered free suits to any athlete at the 2008 Games that wanted one. They ended up giving away more than 3,000 – included swimmers sponsored by rival brands who all made the decision to wear them.
Suits that were not completely made from textiles were subsequently outlawed in 2010.
The world’s leading swimwear brand, Speedo® is passionate about life in and around the water, creating revolutionary new technologies, designs and innovations, and supports swimming from grass-roots through to the elite level. In the 1920s Speedo® made history with the Racerback: the world’s first non-wool suit. In 2008 Speedo® redefined swimwear again with Fastskin® LZR RACER® – the fastest and most technologically advanced swimsuit ever created. 2011 saw Speedo unveil another world first with the Fastskin Racing System – a cap, goggle and suit designed to work together as one. Speedo® is owned by Speedo Holdings B.V and distributed in over 170 countries around the world. To find out more visit: www.speedo.com