Korean world champion Hwang Sunwoo finished up his 35-day-long training stint in Australia and is now looking ahead to this summer’s biggest meets.
Along with relay mates Lee Ho-jun, Kim Woomin and Yang Jaehoon, 19-year-old Hwang trained at Miami under the watchful eye of storied Aussie coach Richard Scarce.
Scarce is the former coach of Aussie aces Cameron McEvoy and Elijah Winnington. McEvoy now trains at Somerville while Winnington is under Dean Boxall at St. Peters Western.
The aforementioned South Korean foursome comprises the national-record-breaking men’s 4x200m freestyle relay. The team captured a 6th place finish at the 2022 World Championships in Budapest and 4th place at the 2022 Short Course World Championships, setting new national standards over each course.
On training down under, Hwang said, “I was quite surprised by the intensity of coach Scarce’s training at first, which was 1.3, 1.4 times more intense than what I had done in Korea.
“I think it was a satisfying training session as I was able to achieve a good record even with a training suit after enduring such strong training.” (Yohap)
South Korea now turns its eyes to the Asian Games on the calendar for September. The best men’s 4x200m freestyle relay result achieved by the nation was represented by a silver medal captured in 1994. As such, with the promise of Hwang and the others, the swimming federation has a solid goal of landing this relay on the podium in Hangzhou, with this Aussie training camp serving as extra preparation.
“I think we could have achieved a better record at that time because we could not show our full potential. I believe we can achieve a good result in the Asian Games,” he said. “With our current record, we may have a chance for a gold medal if we can shorten our time to the 7 minutes and 4 seconds range. Each athlete needs to shorten their time by 0.5 to 0.8 seconds.” (Yonhap)
The LCM national record with splits stands as follows:
– Hwang Sunwoo – 1:45.30
– Kim Woomin – 1:46.57
– Lee Yoo-yeon – 1:48.28
– Lee Ho-joon – 1:46.78
On an individual level, Hwang is also seeking to break his own national and Asian continental record in the men’s 100m free, a time of 47.56 he clocked in the semi-finals of the event at the 2020 Olympic Games.
“I did a lot of practice for the freestyle 100m pace during training with coach Scarce. I hope to break my personal best record that I could not achieve last year.
“I want to stand on the podium again in Fukuoka first,” he said. “Then, I want to achieve good results in both my individual and relay events at the Asian Games, which I consider the most important competition this year.”
Hwang’ll sweep all individual events and the relay as well at the Asian Games. Neither Japan nor China seem to focus on freestyle relays. On top of that, military exemption for the gold medalists is the biggest motivation for the Korean male athletes. That’s why they put the AG first. Certainly getting a gold at the AG is alot easier than a podium in Paris.
Big talker.They will be defeated in any relay by China and Japan in Hangzhou,and Pan will break his record this year.Duncan will be back this year, and Hwang will probably get nowhere in Fukuoka.
Maybe now we’re about to see an explosion in the 200 free field because of Popovici. Started with him now it trickles down to guys like sun-woo and dean going 1:43-1:42. Either way this is the most exciting the 200 free has been since 2008-09.
Interesting that he notes the training was more intense. Anyone know what his training in Korea is like?
1.3-1.4x! Love his precision.
Wonder if perhaps it’s simply referring to the yards swum and maybe was lost in translation? Hard to imagine they’re training much less intensely than in South Korea!
He wants to beat Popovici?! I like his attitude.
We need more swimmers like him.
Remember how Phelps wanted to beat Thorpe in 200
Stephanie Rice wanted to beat Katie Hoff in IMs
Titmus wanted to beat Ledecky in 400 free.
Nothing is impossible.