It turns out that the Under Armour speedskating suits were a factor in the U.S. speedskating team’s dismal performance in the Sochi Olympics. But it was one of many.
According to this Wall Street Journal article, US Speedskating commissioned a report to look into the factors surrounding the team’s failure to medal for the first time in 30 years.
The Mach 39 Under Armour suits were mentioned as part of the problem – not the suits themselves, per se, but the fact that they were implemented late in the game.
Mr. Morris said the team erred in its decision not to use the brand-new Mach 39 suits in competition before the Olympics, as well as a skate polish that the team introduced on the eve of the Games.
‘The idea that we would give these game-changers to our athletes right before the Olympics and they would get to the line and feel like they had an advantage, that did not work,’ Mr. Morris said. ‘The lesson there is that if we have game-changers like that, let’s introduce them in December, not February.’
Other contributing factors were the team’s practice conditions in Italy prior to the Games – indoors and at sea level – and the demanding travel that certain team members had to deal with, who competed in Japan the week before their Olympics training began.