Outfitting Michael Phelps' swimsuit and goggles for the Olympian's all-time gold record-setting performance Wednesday morning in Beijing was supposed to be another coup for Speedo.
It turned into a nightmare of sorts when the now 11-time gold medalist admitted that his goggles didn't work for the 200-meter butterfly. After he broke another world record, he took off the goggles and poured the water out of them and said he couldn't see anything throughout the race.
The positive is that Phelps--who I can't believe uses a new pair of goggles and a new suit for every race--was still able to win. The negative is that, at least in terms of volume, the brand is going to sell more goggles than swimsuits. Could you imagine what would have happened if this threw Phelps off and he didn't win the gold? Would Speedo have counted it as a gold towards his $1 million bonus if it were determined that it was the company's fault?
Because we're going to assume that Phelps knows how to put on a pair of goggles, unfortunately the blame is going to go to Speedo. For the next race, they might want to check that suction, especially on that pair that's made for Phelps. Speedo execs didn't immediately respond to a request for a comment on the company's interpretation of the faulty goggles.
Speedo is owned by Warnaco.
Update: A Speedo spokesperson said this about the goggles incident: "We haven't had a chance to speak with Michael yet, as he's focused on tonight's prelims."
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