SYDNEY, Australia – In a world where hundredths of a second are crucial, world-class swimmers are prepared to take a serious look at an innovative racing mask from Speedo. The “Speedmask” is a swim cap with built-in goggles. It covers the ears and stops even with the point of the nose. The idea is to cut down drag around the goggles. Researchers say eye sockets create 20% of the resistance while swimming and believe the mask will smooth out the turbulence between the cap and the goggle and improve the flow of water around the eye sockets by up to 53%. Speedo officials say that FINA has approved the design, and Australian competitors will use the mask at the 1998 World Championships in Perth.