Tuesday, May 19, 2009

FINA's List is on my List, if you know what I mean...

Yeah, Grevers is mad for a reason.

FINA’s list of approved suits for world championships was released today (phase 1 of the FINA suit plan) and it has honestly made me more angry about swimsuits than I was before.

According to Swimming World, Blue Seventy has been left off completely, and the Arena X-Glide is out as well. SwimNews says that the Jaked suits on the list do not include the Jaked 01, which is the suit Fred Bousquet used when he broke the 21 barrier in the 50 free. In glancing at the list, I see TYR models A12, A7 and A10 which Swimming World also reports are the Tracer Rise, Tracer Light and another suit in development… so that means the TYR Titan is also gone.

Tony Austin brings up a great point as always, in that FINA is allowing people paid by Speedo to be on the committee that makes the decisions regarding the list, which is ridiculous. Tony and I are both on the same page in our thinking that Speedo has too much influence and this list pretty much proves us right. The line was drawn at the LZR, and every recent suit that could be considered better was removed from competition. If I were a betting man, I would have won big cash. I really worried that the LZR would be approved and anything better would be cut. Talk about dead on the money!!

Now here is where I have issues with all of it. Everyone knows I would love to do away with the tech, but I think that FINA has made a real blunder here. Keeping the LZR and ditching the rest leaves us no better… it actually makes it all worse:

1. They haven’t solved the issue of cost. The LZR is still $550 and new suits that comply will still have an outrageous price tag.
2. We still can't compare with past generations.

3. What do we do with records set in unapproved suits? Craig Lord is already proudly announcing that the sub-21 50 free by Bousquet and sub-47 100 free by Bernard never happened.

4. With the LZR still in play, don’t we still have the same issues with ‘performance enhancement?’ The “world record bull run” started with Speedo and their “2%” improvement.

5. What happens to all of those athletes who are sponsored by companies who will now be struggling because Speedo is the only major tech suit still legal?

6. The only issue that might be solved here is that of the “level playing field,” since now Speedo will own nearly 100% of the market share.

If you are gonna allow the LZR, you better allow the rest or you have solved ABSOLUTELY NOTHING. You were right, Mr. Schubert. It is going to be a “real test of character.” And FINA might have just shown that they have none by allowing the richest swimsuit company to set the rules by which all the rest must play.

I think that this list might be the straw that broke the camel’s back to help TYR win their anti-trust lawsuit. Thoughts, anyone?


  1. I should have taken the day, off! Work is so getting in the way of all this news.

    I spoke with TYR, they are happy the Rise, Light and undisclosed suit made it but I think that was Speedo throwing a barking dog a big fat bone.

    You know TYR would have dragged FINA into court and made every single coach on that board reveal if they were bought and paid for by any specific suit maker.

    I got off the phone with b70 and they are releasing a press release with very measured words.

  2. what i think is that all the suits that were giving trouble to spedoo got axed so spedoo could still be number one . sorry for any mistakes , i am french , TRY is the official sponsor of the french federation so i will check out the french federation web site to see what statement will the federation make

  3. You realize the Blueseventy isn't on their because they have no suit that's middle ground.

  4. im pretty sure this "lzr racer pro" is different from the current "lzr racer"
    and will probably be thinner

  5. The LZR Racer pro is the LZR. What can we do about this? I am so angry and so sickened by my sport.

  6. Tony nailed it. Sounds like TYR got thrown a big fat bone...after all FINA's talk about "scientifically verifiable" they use subjective measurements in the end. Good job guys...

    There is a petition circulating, just went live this morning, taking on FINA and this so-called "approval process." Visit the link and sign if you have any problem at all with the way this has been handled.

    If you don't say anything, we can't stop it. http://www.ipetitions.com/petition/athletesfirst/

    Just imagine getting thousands of signatures, delivering a big fat email to every member of the board, and then getting a huge paper copy dumped in their lap. You better believe they will pay attention.

  7. Speedo's influence calls the shots. Those manufacturers who don't put money into swimming will have to fight for their suits to be approved. The Speedo LZR will be replaced before too long by a faster and more buoyant suit. Speedo are already working on the next generation of bodysuits which will blow the existing LZR out of the water. Speedo will be able to name their price too. If you think the present LZRs are expensive you aint seen nothing yet.

    Juicy Lucy

  8. Hmmm, kinda like allowing Balco to sit on the WADA board, taking THG off the banned substances list and leaving nandrolone on the list.

  9. Hi Annonymous - FOR INFO The LZR Racer Pro is a different suit to the LZR Racer, it's not a bonded suit.