LOS ANGELES, Calif., May 24. SPEEDO announced the signing of 21-year-old breakout swim star Ryan Lochte to a long-term contract through 2016. One of the most versatile male swimmers to emerge over the past 20 years, Lochte is projected to be a serious medal contender at the 2008 Olympics in Beijing.
Lochte has the unique ability to compete in multiple disciplines including the backstroke, freestyle and the individual medley and has garnered national attention with his recent stellar performance. In April, Lochte shattered three World records and won six medals (three gold) en route to being awarded the FINA Trophy for the Best Male Athlete at the 2006 FINA Short Course World Championships in Shanghai, China. Lochte won gold as part of the USA men’s 800m free relay team and silver in the 200m IM at the 2004 Olympics in Athens.
“I am thrilled to partner with Speedo,” said Lochte. “Speedo is the top name in swimwear and is truly innovative in product design. I look forward to working with the Speedo team as I continue to train for the 2008 Beijing Olympics and beyond.”
“Ryan is at the forefront of a new wave of young swim stars to emerge in the past year,” said Sheree Waterson, President, Speedo North America. “Along with new Team Speedo members Katie Hoff and Kate Ziegler, Ryan has the potential to carry the sport and the brand to a whole new level.”
The Daytona, FL native is a senior at the University of Florida. He will remain in Gainesville to train under UF Head Coach Gregg Troy. Lochte is arguably one of the most decorated collegiate swimmers of all time with 24 All-American honors, seven NCAA Championships and seven SEC titles; Lochte was twice named NCAA Swimmer of the Year. His swimming career began under the coaching of parents, father Steve and mother Ike, in Rochester, NY. Following a move to Florida, Lochte continued to train under his father at the Daytona Beach Swim Club.
In preparation for the 2008 Beijing Olympics, Lochte will compete for Team USA at the 2006 Pan Pacific Swimming Championships, presented by Speedo, in Victoria, B.C. and the 2007 FINA World Aquatic Championships in Melbourne, Australia.
As a member of Team Speedo, Lochte will also be part of an athlete advisory group to the Speedo Aqualab, the research and development center designed to produce the world’s most innovative swimwear and accessories. In 2004, it introduced the world’s fastest swimsuit, the Fastskin FSII.
Born on Bondi Beach near Sydney, Australia in 1928, SPEEDO is the world's top-selling swimwear brand. The brand's heritage derives from its leadership in competitive swimming, where more Olympic Gold Medals have been won in Speedo than any other brand. Eight-time Olympic Medalist Michael Phelps and seven-time Olympic medalist Amanda Beard are among the elite swimmers who wear SPEEDO FASTSKIN technology. Building on its authentic base, the SPEEDO product line has dramatically expanded over the years. It now includes women's fashion and fitness swimwear, men's water shorts, kid's swimwear, active wear, footwear, and a comprehensive collection of aquatic and fitness equipment. For more information visit, www.SpeedoUSA.com.