COLORADO SPRINGS, June 22. USA Swimming's Board of Directors voted 16-3 in a conference call this afternoon to ban the use of the new body suits at the U.S. Olympic Swimming Trials, to be held August 9-16 in Indianapolis.
The decision, which reversed the recommendation of the body's Steering Committee, chose to disallow the suits in the interest of fairness to all competitors at the Trials and to avoid legal entanglements.
Chuck Wielgus, USA Swimming's Executive Director, commented: "FINA's decision in October of 1999 to allow the use of this new technology and the Court of Arbitration for Sport's advisory opinion that reaffirmed FINA's decision were both premised on the availability of the suit to all competitors.
"The Board had a real concern that the suit would not be readily available to all Trials' swimmers in a reasonable amount of time prior to the event,"Wielgus said. "It was in the best interest of all of our Olympic Trials swimmers to make a final decision now."
USA Swimming reaffirmed that it will allow American swimmers to wear the suits in competition at the Olympic Games in Sydney.