(Reuters) – Disgraced Olympic swimmer Ryan Lochte, who lost all his major sponsors after his tale about being robbed and held at gunpoint during the Rio Olympics, has signed on with TYR Sport, the swimwear company said on Thursday.
Lochte, a 12-time Olympic medalist who is serving a USA Swimming-imposed suspension for his part in the scandal, joins a team of TYR-sponsored swimmers including Olympic gold medalists Dana Vollmer, Matt Grevers, Cody Miller and Kelsi Worrell.
“I still have so much more I want to accomplish and TYR offers the perfect platform to achieve those goals,” Lochte said in a statement released by U.S.-based TYR.
“I’ve always been very impressed with the quality of their gear and feel fortunate to be part of their family. I look forward to the next chapter.”
Lochte, who won gold in the 4×200 meters freestyle relay in Rio, will miss the national championships in June as part of the 10-month ban he was given last September, making him ineligible for the July 14-30 World Championships in Budapest.
The 32-year-old American swimmer was vilified in the media and lost his four his major sponsors, including Speedo USA and Ralph Lauren Corp, following his apology last August for what he called an “over-exaggerated” story.
Lochte has since competed on ABC’s “Dancing With the Stars”, announced his engagement to former Playboy model Kayla Rae and announced that the couple are expecting their first child.
TYR said Lochte’s debut will be featured in the company’s “Just Let Me Work” marketing campaign and will provide fans with a glimpse into what motivates the decorated athlete.
(Reporting by Frank Pingue in Toronto)