Under Armour Extends Speedskating Suit Deal
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BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Despite being thrown under the bus by the U.S. speedskating team in Sochi, Baltimore-based Under Armour announces it is sticking with the team.
Jessica Kartalija has details.
CEO Kevin Plank has said the suits were unfairly blamed as part of a witch hunt. Now they’ve agreed to continue making the speedskating suits for the next two Olympic games.
The Mach 39 suit was supposed to be the team’s secret weapon. Under Armour and Lockheed Martin used the same aerodynamic technology found in fighter jets.
Maryland native and Under Armour founder and CEO Kevin Plank appeared on “CBS This Morning” after U.S. speedskaters didn’t medal and blamed their Under Armour suit. The team went back to an older model, but results didn’t improve.
“Look, we got beat up a little bit last week and speedskating is obviously getting beaten up. So what we don’t do, is we don’t retreat,” Plank said. “We get knocked down, we dust ourselves off and we come back quicker, better and stronger than we ever were before.”
Plank said Friday the Baltimore-based company is renewing their contract with the U.S. speedskating team for another eight years.
“We’re looking forward to South Korea and we’re looking forward to ’22 as well, wherever that thing is going to be,” he said.
Under Armour athletes have already won 10 medals at the Olympics. Plank told WJZ the suits were being blamed unnecessarily.
“It’s a bit of a head scratcher where I think the team isn’t performing as well as any of us hoped to,” Plank said.
The renewed agreement, Plank says, is a testament of their loyalty to American athletes.
“We tried something and our athletes didn’t win. We remain patriots first, so this is us waving American flags going, ‘Go, go, go, go USA,’” he said.
Under Armour also has contracts with the U.S. bobsled, skeleton and gymnastics teams, as well as the Canadian snowboard team.
Financial terms of the new agreement were not disclosed.
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