The USA Tack & Field uniforms for the 2012 Summer Olympics were unveiled on Thursday, with Nike boasting the golf-ball inspired equipment could help sprinters shave valuable time.
The highlight of the announcement (you can see a full gallery of the uniforms at Nike Running's official Facebook page) is the Pro TurboSpeed, a skin-tight, full-body suit that has been wind-tunnel tested and is outfitted with dimples, much like that on a golf ball, to help decrease resistance.
(2008 Beijing 200m silver medalist Allyson Felix, via Facebook)
Originally made public in February, the Nike calls the Pro TurboSpeed suit their "fastest ever," and boasts it is "up to .023 seconds faster over 100m than our previous track uniform." That might not sound like much, but in 2008, it would have meant a silver medal for American Walter Dix instead of the bronze in the 100m. (It wouldn't have helped him catch Usain Bolt, however, because Usain Bolt.)
"We outdid ourselves," said Scott Williams, Nike's creative director of innovation.
Nike also unveiled two types of Olympics shoes, the Nike Zoom Superfly R4 and Nike Zoom Victory Elite, worn by sprinters and middle distance runners, both of which have Nike's Flywire technology -- basically, a knitted shoe.
The shoe worn by marathon runners will also save about 19 percent of its old marathon shoe weight - or about the weight of a car over the 40,000 steps typically taken in a marathon, Lotti said.
The shoe comes from a complete shift in the manufacturing process, which results in a single, seamless knit upper. A traditional sneaker is put together more like a puzzle piece, with multiple patches glued or stitched together. The glue or stitching adds weight, he says.
Lastly, Nike debuted the three different outfits the U.S. athletes will be wearing on the medal stand -- "The outfits should be celebratory," said Lotti. "You don't want it to be a standard training outfit. ... It's an opportunity for athletes to shine."
Track cyclists, sailors and synchronized swimmers are among those who would wear a silver jacket and pant; basketball players and soccer players, as well as handballers and water polo players, would be in a navy, satiny tracksuit; and archers, equestrians and wrestlers would be in a bomber-style jacket that's designed as a nod to a varsity letterman jacket.
You can see photos of the medal-stand uniforms at NIke's official site.