IRVINE (California) (AFP) Beijing Olympic star Michael Phelps is looking forward to see how the worlds best swimmers handle the ban on the now-banned bodysuits that created world records until being outlawed by FINA. Phelps, who won a record eight gold medals at Beijing, will swim five events this week at the US national championships, a qualifier for the Pan Pacific meet here in two weeks as well as next years World Championships in Shanghai. Times worldwide have been slower since polyurethane bodysuits were banned this year after 43 world records were set at last years worlds in Rome, but Phelps expects close races even if the speeds are not at unprecedented levels. I still think youre going to see tight races, Phelps said. I would rather see a tight race than watch a world record get obliterated by five seconds. Phelps said he looks forward to seeing which swimmers who shattered marks in bodysuits can back up their efforts with success now that the attire aid no longer exists. Its really going to be interesting to see who can make the transition between wearing (normal) suits and not wearing (banned) suits, Phelps said.