Japanese cyclist to wear swimsuit in Beijing
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Thursday, July 31, 2008

Japanese cyclist to wear swimsuit in Beijing

by Agence France-Presse at 7:48 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Track
Japanese Olympic cyclist Tomohiro Nagatsuka plans to wear Speedo's record-breaking LZR Racer swimwear beneath his track racing suit in his quest for a medal at the Beijing Games.

Knee-length LZR shorts helped him slash his personal 250-metre record by about 0.2 seconds to 17.8 seconds in training, Nagatsuka told reporters, according to local media on Thursday.

"I thought what was effective in swimming would be also good in cycling," said Nagatsuka, who combined with Toshiaki Fushimi and Masaki Inoue to win the men's team sprint silver at the 2004 Athens Games.

"I presume it is Speedo's body-squeezing effect, not a reduction in air resistance, that helps," added the 29-year-old.

The LZR Racer was developed with the help of the US space agency NASA. It uses a high-tech fabric of water-resistant polyurethane and is structured to squeeze the swimmer's body into the right posture.

It has taken swimming by storm, playing a role in 44 of the 48 short- and long-course world records since it debuted in February.

"In swimming, they speak highly of LZR's effect to constrict the body's surface area. I myself liked the way it supported muscles with a strong embrace," Nagatsuka said. "It will be my third Olympics and I want to look back at it without any regret."

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