China’s Ye Shiwen Makes History, 400 IM Analysis

  224 Davis Wuolle | July 28th, 2012 | Featured, International, London 2012 Olympics, News

Ye Shiwen (CHN) broke the first World Record of the 2012 London Olympics. At only 16 years of age, Shiwen blew past leader Elisabeth Beisel (USA) in the final 100 meters, posting a ridiculous freestyle split at 58.68 seconds. Shiwen posted a 4:28.43 to best Stephanie Rice‘s world mark of 4:29.45 set at the 2008 Games in Beijing, which was swum in a hi-tech suit.

SPLITS COMPARED

100 butterfly:  Rice 1:01.47,  Shiwen 1:02.19

100 backstroke: Rice 1:08.36, Shiwen 1:09.54

100 breaststroke: Rice 1:17.42, Shiwen 1:18.02

100 freestyle: Rice 1:02.2, Shiwen 58.68

Coming home in 58.68 looks more like a strong final 100 of a 200 meters freestyle, not a 400 IM. After Sun Yang’s 53.50 closer in the 400 meters freestyle, it’s clear  China’s training regiment is built on investing in a monstrous aerobic base.

Stephanie Rice’s Wortld Record from Beijing:

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224 Comments on "China’s Ye Shiwen Makes History, 400 IM Analysis"


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Come on
4 years 2 months ago

steroids for sure. this is actually not possible..

Yoda
4 years 2 months ago

Oh look, the dirty commies just produced another Drago! And she can’t possibly be THAT good…right? I mean, nobody saw that Lochte slowed down significantly in his last 50m since he had a comfortable lead at the time; so who in their righteous-zionist-mind would think Ye can post a comparable time to that?

Watch this video (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z-CpD8t_5Rw), pathetic doubters, and look at how explosive she is with her free style; and she was only 14 at the time! Oh wait, one more thing: Michael Phelps dominated swimming in 2008, winning unprecedented 8 gold medals — NO MEN IN HISTORY HAS EVER ACCOMPLISHED THAT, SO LOGICALLY HE MUST BE DOPING AS WELL!

[Update: Just received a phone call from Barry Bonds: He thinks he’s innocent! “All those HRs are legit ’cause we American make the rules!”]

Pancho
4 years 2 months ago

Sorry – but we’ve seen it all before.

Ahh Yoda – I’d love to agree with you .. . I really would. History argues otherwise.

In track and field Chinese women went from nowhere to the best in history in the distance running in 2 years. Then when the drug testing improved . . . they all “decided to retire” . . . their runners have never approached that level again

In gymnastics they fielded a team of “women” with falsified birth certificates . . . when found out they threw the athletes under the bus.

I would love to believe that they are swimming clean . . . but recent history history makes me seriously doubt it

Norman
4 years 2 months ago

Lance Armstrong, is he American? he must not dope because he is American and won so many medals. Guys, China afford to hire the best swimming coach in the world from Australia with 4 times salary and have SLOW annual economic growth of 8% this years after near 25 years of double digit growth so sometimes people need to understand that we are not always the best. We are the best but British was the powerhouse two century ago and don’t forgot Rome Empire.

Mike Ross
4 years 2 months ago

Norman, who in THIS discussion, is defending Lance Armstrong? I have not read a single post defending Lance, American or not.

Bringing the money issue into this discussion only makes me mistrust Ye’s swim further. Money give incentive to cheat. And it also gives incentive to look the other way.

Landlubbers
4 years 1 month ago

YES, American overall is the most powerful and richest nation, so are you suggest you mistrust American furthest.

Julia
4 years 2 months ago

Actually, Rebecca Adlington has done a faster final 50m at the end of an 800m race (28.91 Shanghai 2011). So does that your comment mean she’s doped up too?

hax
1 year 2 months ago

Also, this is a guys compression not women but can still show super fast last 50, Zhang lin had a 25.99 split coming home on his 800 free, and paul biedermann split 24.xx coming home in the 400 free world record

Linda Barzini
3 years 10 months ago

Two big problems for Yi Shiwen. The first is that China was caught doping throughout the 90’s. In 1998, they were caught going into Australia with enough HGH for the entire team. The large number of female swimmers from China that were busted for doping was a national embarassment. Many of the administrators of this state sponsored “scientific training” regimen are still around. The suspicion hangs heavy, especially when the women significantly outperform the men. I wouldn’t be surprised if one of the coaches gave her Epo without her knowing it. I would love to see her hematocrit result (ratio of rbc/serum). I would bet she is outside the 95% norm.

The second problem is her blazing fast 58.68 in the last hundred. Wow, that is crazy fast. Allison Schmidt only split a 58.23 in the last hundred of her WINNING 200 M Free. If Yi S. was either using Epo or blood transfusions, the enhanced rbc count would factor in the last 100. She wouldn’t get tired like the other competitors. Also, swimming the last lap faster than the men’s champion is a lot suspicious.

In my personal opinion, I sadly think Yi Shiwen was cheating. Show us her hematocrit and hemoglobin levels and end the debate.

TX Swimmer
4 years 2 months ago

If WADA does not get a handle on this. Its gonna become like a FREAK SHOW!

Philip Johnson
4 years 2 months ago

the athletes are simply ahead of the drug testers. in Shanghai there was not one positive drug test.

Jg
4 years 2 months ago

Some of these guys do come to Aust but it is only for 3 months. Interestingly they start very fast but on return to China the times are somewhat subdued. Then a few months at home & whazoo .

Yes they do an aerobic base training up to 7 hours a day. However I am not crediting any China athletes. When a very young sprinter tests positive for epo you know things ae cooking & it aint Ma’s turtle soup.

Mike Ross
4 years 2 months ago

Is “monstrous aerobic base” what the kids are calling EPO these days?

Perhaps we can’t get effective testing but I think we can demonstrate the HIGHLY unlikely nature of this swim. Compare Ye’s final 100 with all of the men in the 400 M IM final. Compare her final 100 with Pellegrini’s final 100 in the 400 M free when she set the World Record in 2009.

If she can finish like this, why is she not swimming the 400 M free? Why is she not on the 4×200 Freestyle relay?

There is no way this was clean swim!

underwater
4 years 2 months ago

So your argument is “this is an incredible split, therefore she cheated.” Innocent until proven guilty my friend.

Mike Ross
4 years 2 months ago

“Innocent until proven guilty” is an excuse that is often thrown about in a way of invoking something from various legal systems to prevent an argument being made for suspecting cheating in athletics. This is not a court of law.

I think the chance that this swim was unaided by some form of doping is highly unlikely. I think if you would analyze some times you would recognize the same thing.

Azami
4 years 2 months ago

That doesn’t detract from the validity of his statement. You are the accuser so you have to prove her guilt, as much as we’d love to take your word for it, that’s make a mockery of the legal system and be a bad example for civilized countries too.

underwater
4 years 2 months ago

“Analyze some times”? I think all of us SwimSwammers spend plenty of our lives analyzing times lol. If you think that it’s highly unlikely this swim was clean, then that’s your guess, and you’re entitled to guess. It’s your declaration “There is no way this was a clean swim!” that’s presumptuous and immature.

Also, this message board actually IS a court of law, with the Honorable Judge Braden Keith presiding! 😛

kurutoga
4 years 2 months ago

Ye’s final 100m is will be #5th among men 400IM’s last 100m. This is really apples to oranges comparison. Ye’s history since the age of 14 showed she is a freestyle specialist among IM swimmers. This does not necessarily mean she is a good 400m freestyle swimmer.

Michael
4 years 2 months ago

Finally a sensible post, Kurutoga.

Guess what! Somebody is going to go 17 seconds in the 50yd free one day…get ready for it.

Old American swimming principles are being broken left and right by the Chinese…(don’t sammy-save-up, don’t double breathe in freestyle, don’t ever triple breathe in freestyle, don’t breathe every stroke in fly, don’t breathe right before or right after your turn, always do a breaststroke pull-out) …in favor of logically and scientifically sound alternatives, and the swimming dinosaurs are roaring about it.

Take Sun Yang, he only takes 27 strokes per 50 meter in his mile. If he breathes to one side only, he will only get 26 breaths per minute, therefore he had to find more places to breathe.

This girl has known her best stroke is freestyle, so she has found ways to relax and still be in position by the free. She breathed every stroke in the fly. Even beisel skipped out on breaths. She came right up off the turn up into backstroke–practically no underwater dolphin kicks. She skipped the 1st breaststroke pullout to adjust to the knew rhythm of breathing.

(Sidenote:It would be very interesting to count and compare the number, or rate of breaths athletes take in aerobic swimming events.)

If she was doping, that’s very sad. If she wasn’t, well…I hope you were taking notes!

swimmer 2
4 years 2 months ago

Agreed. They disappear in the shadows of the “Bamboo curtain” for a few months, before emerging again on a whole different level. Just not the same level of strict testing 52 weeks a year over there.

I sort of felt the same way about Pererra (spelling?) from Brazil when he broke out a few years ago. Knowing Brazil’s history… wouldn’t surprise me.

swimmer
4 years 2 months ago

I want to think she did this cleanly but I can’t

Swimmer123
4 years 2 months ago

what about Missy Franklin ? she’s 17 years old and swam amazing. So is she using drugs too ?

jmathew4
4 years 2 months ago

no but she also didnt improve 7 seconds from last years world championshp where she finished 5th…. not sayin she doped but it needs to be tested every year for the 8 years they have it, incase china’s mad scientists have some new stuff

SoCalSun
4 years 2 months ago

The Chinese girl actually out split Lochte on the last 50 by 3 tenths in the same event! There is no universe in which a 16 year old girl can do that clean.

Congrats to Elizabeth Beisel. Recognized or not, you are the true Olympic champion.

TX Swimmer
4 years 2 months ago

Lost in all this Ye madness is the bronze medal winner. Where did she come from?!?

underwater
4 years 2 months ago

Li Xuanxu has been around for a while! She was an Olympian in 2008. Here are her world rankings in 400 IM for the past five years:

2008 – 9th
2009 – 2nd
2010 – 4th
2011 – 2nd

So she definitely did not come out of nowhere.

ZYNG43
4 years 2 months ago

Seriously what the hell was that. I just dont see how that was possible. Something is up here

Kelvin
4 years 2 months ago

I’ll believe it…

When China produces a sub 4:00 male 400m IMer who closes the last 100m in 54

Swimmer
4 years 2 months ago

What about a 53.5 to close a 400 free?

underwater
4 years 2 months ago

The amount of skepticism on here is unbelievable. Anyone who watched the 200 IM at last year’s World Champs would have expected Ye to storm home. Freestyle is by far her strongest stroke. Perhaps some of you are familiar with the term “innocent until proven guilty”? Unless you have credible information that someone cheated, you’re just being a jealous hater. A few weeks ago Camille Muffat of France split a 1:58 on the last 200 of a 400 free. Where were the cries of cheating then? I’d like to give you guys the benefit of the doubt, but I fear a lot of these comments, consciously or not, are motivated by racism.

joeb
4 years 2 months ago

agreed! if an american did this, we wouldn’t blink an eye. she won worlds in the 2im and no one said anything then. kukors went 2:06 and no one accused her….that was out of the blue

Philip Johnson
4 years 2 months ago

lol at the Kukors analogy. She was clearly a suit swimmer like Biedermann, Walters, Cielo.

Rafael
4 years 2 months ago

Cielo with 21.38 and 47.84 is a Suit Swimmer:??

4 years 2 months ago

Rafael,
i know Cielo feels like one.He dont like the difference around 0.4 and 0.9 between his times and his WRs.He wants to drop the difference(How Much?I dont know…).He hates the term SUIT SWIMMER.

Swimmer
4 years 2 months ago

Let’s not forget that Cielo has a positive test to his name.

Philip Johnson
4 years 2 months ago

yeah, why are many people so skeptical at the Chinese? it’s not like they had state sponsored doping in their past. it’s not like their women’s team was caught red handed. it’s not they just had a chief doctor that admitted to it. i agree, racists & jealousy.

Rafael
4 years 2 months ago

Johnson.

May I recall US track and field Doping that EVERYONE knew but was never proved so?

Philip Johnson
4 years 2 months ago

no country is perfect, i am not denying there are dopers in the US. i’m just saying the skepticism isn’t unwarranted given their past.

Philip Johnson
4 years 2 months ago

no country is perfect, i am not denying there are not dopers in the US. i’m just saying the skepticism isn’t unwarranted given their past.

Swimmer
4 years 2 months ago

Even the USA media referred to the 2008 Olympics for track and field (where the USA was awful) as the post BALCO era.

The USA has stepped up its drug testing to try to end that but the rest of the work hasn’t caught up.

Jean Marie
4 years 2 months ago

Why do people constantly compare track & field with swimming? It’s a completely different sport with an entirely different culture. There has NEVER been in US swimming anything close to what has happened in T & F. Yes, there have been some isolated cases of attempted cheating, but to constantly bring up the comparison is ridicules.

puppets
4 years 1 month ago

More to the point: why do so many people argue that one person or group doping somehow justifies another person or group doing so? It’s an odd moral stance to say the least but it’s one you find repeated over and over again in these forums.

underwater
4 years 2 months ago

Actually that was a poor word choice on my part, I shouldn’t have even used the word skepticism. People here aren’t being skeptical; skepticism implies a degree of uncertainty. Posters on this article are acting like they KNOW that Ye cheated. If people were merely being skeptical, I never would have said anything. It’s comments like “there’s no way this swim was clean” that I strongly disagree with. Believe me, if a Chinese swim coach gets caught at the airport with a suitcase full of hgh, I will not be arguing that they are clean! I have no idea whether Ye took PEDs. What I do know is that she hasn’t tested positive yet.

Jean Marie
4 years 2 months ago

Ah yes — the race card — don’t leave home without it. It’s so tiring and overused. How about answering the question. How is it possible for a 16 year old girl to out swim a 27 year old man? Let’s use logic and not emotion. Unless your own “racism” is blinding you.

underwater
4 years 2 months ago

What swim meet were you watching? In the one I just watched, Lochte beat Ye by 23 SECONDS. 23 SECONDS!!!! In a 400 IM! How does beating someone by 23 seconds count as being outswam?

Also, LOLZ at “let’s use logic and not emotion” comment. Your entire argument is based off an emotional reaction to her last 100 split as well as your emotional need for certainty. I am NOT saying that I am 100% certain that Ye did not cheat. What I am saying is that currently there is no proof of this. If you are guided by logic and not emotion, you realize that at this point there is no way to know whether or not she cheated with 100% certainty.

Jean Marie
4 years 2 months ago

Ye Shiwen (CHN) 58.68
Beisel (USA) 102.33
Xuanxu (CHN) 101.58
Hosszu (HUN) 102.66
Hannah (GBR) 102.97
Rice (AUS) 103.98
Leverenz (USA) 104.45
Garcia (ESP) 102.91

Men
Lochte (USA) 58.65
Pereira (BRA) 59.70
Hagino (JPN) 58.20
Phelps (USA) 58.32
Le Clos (RSA) 59.15
Horihata (JPN) 57.58
Fraser-Holmes (AUS) 58.13
Marin (ITA) 100.12 (59.22p)

Now explain to me as that final leg was possible?

Jean Marie
4 years 2 months ago

Typo — Now explain to me how that final leg was possible?

underwater
4 years 2 months ago

Explain to me how it’s impossible! It’s possible because it JUST HAPPENED. If you want to play the split game, we have to look at ALL the splits. So let’s look at everyone’s split through the first 300 meters.

Lochte – 3:06.53
Ye – 3:29.75
In the men’s race, Horihata was last at the 300, and even he split 3:15.72

Now we have a little context for those last 100 splits.

Just think about it from a swimmers perspective. Imagine you’re tapered and shaved. After a meet warm up and a short break your coach asks you to swim a 400: 300 easy, 100 all out. If you coasted the first 300, your last 100 would be very fast. In fact it might not be that far off your personal best in the 100. Now clearly Ye didn’t swim the first 300 “easy”, but she was holding back a lot more than people realize. That’s what makes this incredible split possible.

Sadly though, you completely missed the point I was trying to make in the last post. I don’t KNOW that Ye is clean, there’s just currently no proof that she’s not clean. A very fast last 100 is not proof of cheating, it’s proof of some serious negative splitting.

Mike Ross
4 years 2 months ago

Fair point.

I am not saying I am 100% certain that Ye cheated. I am 95% sure. If the weather predicts a 95% chance of rain; I bring an umbrella!

David Berkoff
4 years 2 months ago

I agree with Mike. Five reasons: 2 historical and 3 temporal.

1. China has had 40 (yes 40!) doping violations in swimming since 1994 when they were caught red-handed at the Asian Games. That’s four times more than the next closest country.

2. China, like East Germany, is a closed society with none of the democratic checks and balances we have in free society (albeit I’d rather be Chinese in 2012 than East German in 1980). Part of helping ensure clean sports is transparency and openness.

3. Ye Shiwen’s “former” teammate was just busted for EPO. EPO and similar substances increase endurance and assist in training recovery.

4. None of the three top women in the 400 free came home better than 1:00.3. That’s 1.8 seconds or nearly 3% slower than Shiwen’s last hundred. Take into account the fact that Adlington, Schmidt and Muffat all started their last 100 from a flip turn while Shiwen started from a hand touch and we’re talking 2.5 seconds and 4%. I just don’t see how she was 4% faster than the best female middle distance freestylers in the world in this race. Unless she totally bagged the first 300 (which begs the question of how would she do that?) a 58.6 seems, well, sort of impossible.

5. If that last statistic doesn’t convince you that something is VERY FISHY, the average last 100 meters for the men’s 400 IM was 58.73. That means Shiwen was FASTER than the average of the top 8 men in the world.

I’m suspicious.

D

Landlubbers
4 years 1 month ago

TO DAVID BERKOFF

3. Ye Shiwen’s “former” teammate was just busted for EPO. EPO and similar substances increase endurance and assist in training recovery.
——–
You mean Li Zhesi? She was busted for EPO by China, just like
Phelps bust for doping for 3 months in 2009 by U.S.. And the difference is that Li Zhesi will probably banned for lifelong. Which on the opposite shows China’s determination on anti-doping.

And 5?
——
I begin to realize that it’s about IQ rather than truth. The truth is she’s 23 slower than Lochte and 18 slower than men’s average. It’s just energy distribution and strategy. If she spend more energy in first 300m and she would be slower in last 100m, perhaps she also can win and that will seem more POSSIBLE. But her strategy is to reserve more energy for the last 100m, and she successfully break WR.
An old essay says that once upon a time, a man gave 7 peaches a day to a monkey, 4 in the morning and 3 in the afternoon, and the monkey was happy. But one day, he gave the monkey 3 peaches in the morning and 4 in the afternoon, which made the monkey so angry that it attacks the man.
Hopefully you might be clever than the monkey.

Brian
4 years 1 month ago

Landlubbers, you misconstrued the facts.

Phelps wasn’t busted for doping, he was busted for smoking pot. Big difference.

puppets
4 years 1 month ago

“DNA studies do not indicate that separate classifiable subspecies (races) exist within modern humans. While different genes for physical traits such as skin and hair color can be identified between individuals, no consistent patterns of genes across the human genome exist to distinguish one race from another. There also is no genetic basis for divisions of human ethnicity. People who have lived in the same geographic region for many generations may have some alleles in common, but no allele will be found in all members of one population and in no members of any other.” The Human Genome Project.

There! That puts the race card back in the deck.

This debate has a cultural and certainly a political dimension, but it is not about race. It’s about cheating in sport.

blee
4 years 2 months ago

I think there are 2 primary differences between Ye Shiwen and Camille Muffat.

1) Camille has been racing regularly and consistently this whole season. It was clear that when she came home in 1:58, she was experimenting with different racing strategies and intentionally took out the first 200 very slowly.

2) Li Zhesi – the 16-year-old who tested positive for EPO in March 2012. These teenagers are NOT taking EPO on their own. They are not like Marion Jones, who had the money, the connections and the experience in professional sports to proactively and individually start a sophisticated doping regimen. Li Zhesi is a 16-year-old from Liaoning, a poor province that borders North Korea and is known for its mining towns. I can almost guarantee you that she did not Google “EPO,” steal money from her parents’ wallet, and purchase a stash of EPO at the corner pharmacy. There was somebody with a lot of money, power and knowledge who gave her the EPO. I guess it’s hard not to ask.. was Li Zhesi the only teenager receiving EPO?

underwater
4 years 2 months ago

Two points:

-You say Muffat took the race out slowly… Ye did the exact same thing. It’s just less obvious because we aren’t familiar with her best times in the first three strokes.

-Just because Li Zhesi cheated does not mean Ye Shiwen cheated. It’s also ridiculous that you pretend to know how much money Li Zhesi has based off what province she lives in. Liaoning has over 43 million people! Are you saying wealthy people aren’t allowed to live there?

kurutoga
4 years 2 months ago

Li Zhesi was caught by chinese anti doping agencies. If they give her the drug why would they catch her?

underwater
4 years 2 months ago

Great point.

Paul
4 years 2 months ago

That’s just silly. There is just not one body or one person in China or any country. There are different organisations with different people and different motivations and goals.

microbe100
4 years 2 months ago

Mining towns? I think you might have meant Shanxi, the coal mines of China.

Gary
4 years 2 months ago

You know nothing about China. Bordering North Korea doesn’t mean Liaoning is poor, South Korea also borders North Korea.

In fact Liaoning is one of the wealthiest provinces in China (as one of the coastal provinces).

Jcoach
4 years 2 months ago

Well that is easily the best comment yet on the situation. When you think of it like that, how can anyone at least have serious doubt?

blee
4 years 2 months ago

Let’s not get racist here.

But this is an oddly swift swim. She is 5’8″, 140 lbs, and 16 years old. How is she doing the same splits as Ryan Lochte, who is male, 6’2″, 185 lbs and 27 years old? This swim is also 7 seconds faster than she was at 2011 Worlds (she finished 5th). Does that imply we’ll see a 2:05 in the 200 IM (3.5 seconds faster than her World Champ-winning swim)??

Landlubbers
4 years 1 month ago

You forgot to mention 6th placed Men 400IM HORIHATA Yuya, he’s 5’7″(1.69m) and 137 lbs, and his last 50 is 27.87, much faster than Lochte 29.10. Was HORIHATA doping too??
Ye’s 15 in 2011, given her age and few experience in world competetion, her performance would be unstable. Saying that 2011 Worlds (she finished 5th) is her PB in 2011 is unfair and rash. She had already won in 2011 Asian by 4.33.79.
And if one drop PB in 400IM by n seconds, does that necessary means one should drop PB in 200IM by n/2? I guess you are kidding, ain’t you.

Come on
4 years 2 months ago

Kukors had four solid splits, not one random impossible one. And Muffat coming home in 1:58 she went out super slow and came back its not like she went 1:58 1:58. Your analogies make no sense. And innocent until proven guilty.. i’m sorry 58… like no

underwater
4 years 2 months ago

How do you know Ye didn’t go out slow? You have no idea what she’s actually capable of in butterfly, backstroke, or breaststroke. Also, the textile WR for the women’s 100 free is 52.75, and it may be taken lower this week, so a 58.6 is clearly not impossible… it’s six whole seconds slower. Lastly, 58.6 doesn’t prove anything, positive drug tests or subsequent admissions do. So as you so aptly put it… like no.

MarkB
4 years 2 months ago

By your logic, the best male swimmer in the world should then have come home in a 53.0 in his 400 IM since that is 6 whole seconds slower than the 100 Free record.

underwater
4 years 2 months ago

LOL! That DID essentially happen dude. Sun Yang just split a 53.5 coming home. That’s right in the same range.

Also, why would the best male and best female in any particular event have to have a similar race strategy? And in the case of the IM events, why would they have to be strong in the exact same strokes?

Come on
4 years 2 months ago

Are you actually stupid though, 400 free and 400 IM are COMPLETELY DIFFERENT. I could maybe see a girl coming home in 58.6 in 400 free, I mean the world record is 3:58, but no girl comes home in 58.6 in 400 IM, barely any guy comes home in 58.6 in 400 IM

Come on
4 years 2 months ago

Also, at worlds she came home in in 29.42 and the was in 200 IM. 400 IM is like a million times more demanding and she went under that time on both 50’s, 29.4 for is impressive. 58.6 is almost for sure tainted

4 years 2 months ago

I am the only one WHO repared she has grown 12 centimeters in last 1-2 years?Her profile was around 160cm for a long time, and now she is almost in Stephanie Rice height.
Hey Braden, is there some chance to talk with ANYBODY who swam against her in the last 2 years to prove her phisical size increase?IF was a natural growth,her more than 4 inches makes a LOT of difference in any TOP swimmer.
To everyone: this is Olympics, we have to expect some upsets, some freaks rising and unfortunately, some cheat.I just hope her case was the second…

aswimfan
4 years 2 months ago

DDias,
who’s that Brazilian judoka gold medalist?
She’s beautiful.

4 years 2 months ago
Billy
4 years 2 months ago

Here come the Chinese doping accusations. I have no idea if they are using or not. All I wanted is a drug free competition.

Yi Shewin is very talented. World champ at 14 with a monster freestyle leg.

The Chinese have 1.3 billion people, state supported athletic programs and I imagine their coaches are very knowledgeable and tough taskmasters.

Who Knows?

underwater
4 years 2 months ago

+1

Kirt
4 years 2 months ago

I am skeptical; I want to think she’s clean, but I’m not sure. I will say, however, that in the first three strokes Ye hardly moved her legs. All her strokes are super efficient and it looked like she exerted VERY little energy.

underwater
4 years 2 months ago

Very true, good observation

hmm......
4 years 2 months ago

You can’t exert very little energy and stay with the pack of Olympians who are exerting a lot of energy. That just doesn’t make sense

underwater
4 years 2 months ago

“Very little energy” is hyperbole. She wasn’t swimming it like a warm up, but she clearly had a lot more left in the tank than everybody else. Other great distance swimmers like Ian Thorpe or Sun Yang often hang with the pack before breaking away.

hmm......
4 years 2 months ago

Oh, and i guess his saying that “Ye hardly moved her legs” is hyperbole, too.

I think her swim was too surreal for most people, especially swimmers, to grasp. Following a very demanding 300 medley, during which she stayed quite competitive, she was still able to somehow find the energy to dart out to achieve a split time that is only 2 seconds slower than her stand alone 100 meter free personal best of 55.44.

Re ian thorpe, from what I remember, from the very beginning of his races, he always stayed ahead of his heat and gradually pulled away from the pack more and more each lap. His style of pacing was completely different from Ye’s.

underwater
4 years 2 months ago

Yes it clearly is hyperbole… do you know what that word means? Also, if her best is 55.44 and she split that’s 58.68, that’s 3 seconds not 2 (nice math there), BUT the real issue is that the 55.44 is not from this meet. Her true best is probably a 54, maybe even 53. I completely agree with all the people who are wondering why she is not entered in more events. However, if you look at the rest of the Chinese Olympic team, you’ll see a similar pattern of not entering in as many events as they possibly could. Braden Keith wrote an article about this several weeks back. For example, Wang Shun is only swimming the 200 IM, when he could be swimming the 200 free, 1500 free, and 400 IM as well. In the women’s breaststrokes, their top two swimmers in the 100 and 200 are only swimming the 200. Clearly the Chinese coaches are wary of overextending their swimmers. I personally disagree with this strategy, but that’s why Ye isn’t swimming the freestyles. If they leave her off their 4×200 it will be a terrible decision.

Also, you can’t compare the relative pacing to Ian Thorpe. He mostly swam freestyle, while this was an IM. When Beisel falls behind on the first 100 and then comes back on the second 100, that’s not indicative of her pacing, it’s indicative of the fact that fly is her worst stroke and back is her best.

morrow3
4 years 2 months ago

replying to Underwater below – couple points
If you look again at the 400 IM you will see that Ye powers her kicks – they are just below the surface. Especially the fly. I too reject the argument that she was easing her first 300 and was 1 second behind the reigning World Champion – how is it probable? Just “seeing is believing” isn’t a great argument to the improbable when history causes us to be skeptical.

In a country of 1 billion (a common argument) they can find a girl who can come home in 58 at the end of a 400 IM, yet their fastest 400 free styler was 4:08 and top 200 free 1:58 – seems suspicious to me.

I would love to be able to sit back and watch in awe, but anyone who distances themselves from a world class field is subjected to scrutiny. It happened to Inge De Bruijn, Michelle Smith, Flojo, the Greek Sprinters, and often they do turn out to fail a drug test and tarnish the event. Sometimes they are caught and sometimes they are clean.

Someone will eventually go a 17 in the 50 yd free, but it will happen over time. Not all at once. Times will get closer and closer until it is eventually done. A woman splitting faster than a man has happened, all at once. We can argue that Lochte went out too hard and could have swum the race better, or that Ye conserved breaths by not doing underwaters, but we are humans and we have been burned before. It’s good to be skeptical.

Tony
4 years 1 month ago

Ye’s personal best is definitely faster than 55.44 She swam 53.66 when she was 14 years old.

REAL
4 years 2 months ago

Did anyone notice she didn’t even use a breaststroke pullout on both turns?? She beats Lochte in the last 50 without dolphin kicking?? He did 6 kicks off the ast wall. Her only mistake was making it too obvious. Shouldv’e just touched out Beisel and no one would’ve known. 3 months of training with Dennis Cotterell doesn’t make you that fast. China are so far ahead of the doping game it’s not funny.

StuartC
4 years 2 months ago

As I said in the “Lochte tops 400IM” blog.

Sydney Morning Herald had this story today in which they argue that doping in the 1990s originated at the highest levels in China — so China doesn’t have a very good track record – 23 swimmers were given life time bans in the 1990s and doping was rampant in Chinese swimming and in other sports. Coaches to upper level administrators working hand in hand with top scientists were all involved. Has that philosophy changed? I hope so!!, but I doubt it!!

http://media.smh.com.au/news/world-news/chinese-swimmers-were-previously-doping-3496533.html?from=newsbox

I hope she is clean, but that 100 split is basically faster than all of the fastest 400IM male swimmers of all time. If she can do a 58.68 after a grueling 300 then does that mean she can go a 3:50 or a 3:55 in the 400 free? I am curious how fast she went in the Chinese olympic trials in the 400IM? Anyone have this time? Where was she ranked in the world before today?

Time will tell if her swim was legitimate as masking of various drugs has been taken to a new level – blood from all the top athletes will now be stored for at least 8 years and will be retested as technology of testing improves – this applies to all athletes – China, USA, British etc., so someone can still be disqualified 5 years later if new technology discovers a hidden drug or a masking agent — it was just posted by Olympic officials that 5 new athletes will lose medals from 2008 Olympics — this will be announced after 2012 Olympics before statute of limitations runs out!

Masking agents have been taken to a new level and there are very few countries that can afford the technology (USA, Japan, China, Britain, Australia, Germany)

Again time will tell but comments made on this blog and at collegeswimming.com show that people everywhere are watching. When you have one of the fastest male swimmers ever having the same split as a young women after a grueling race, then people should rightfully be suspicious (it’s never happened in the history of swimming before!!, in ANY event). Again if it is legitimate swim then it should go down as the best swim ever — even in the tech suit era, the girls couldn’t break a minute in the last leg of 400IM!! hope that it is a legitimate swim, for all of swimming sake! BUT I have my doubts!!

REAL
4 years 2 months ago

Ye was a 4.35.17 at Chinese Trials, touched out by Li in 4.34.92. A fair improvement for the both of them. Ye did swim a 4.33 last year but only a 4.35.1 in the Worlds final. I would love to be able to have more access to Chinese swimming results, they seem to be a huge mystery to the rest of the world.

lionheartyoung
4 years 2 months ago

Interesting comments and interesting graphical design of this article.
It has to be like that. A dirty Chinese national flag, a subtle hint of a “dirty” record. You don’t even have to say it. A picture does its job.
Americans are so uncomfortable when seeing Chinese success. So miserable.

4 years 2 months ago

I think the Chinese flag was because of our lack of photos of Ye Shiwen…

Brian
4 years 2 months ago

Agreed with Davis.

I think what’s uncomfortable, and I think I speak for many, is that USA Swimming has, for any of its faults, a proven and very legitimate drug testing system in place for its athletes (i.e. testing at all national meets, etc., random drug testing that is mandatory to be present for at all times, etc).

China has a fantastic women’s team, but no men’s team (or next to none). And they go back into hiding after every Olympic Year. It’s very suspicious.

It’s not judging them based on race or anything of the sort.

I liked watching the Japanese swim, Kosuke Kitajima, Kosuke Hagino, their women’s team in the relay today, etc. Park in all his events is sublime.

All of them, however, are present at international meets and also at meets in the US. China stays in the dark, so we can only take them at their word that they aren’t doping.

I believe Schubert was highly skeptical of them in Beijing, if I remember right.

Sans Pallegrini
4 years 2 months ago

“China has a fantastic women’s team, but no men’s team (or next to none). And they go back into hiding after every Olympic Year. It’s very suspicious.”

If you look at Ye Shiwe’s competitive history, she was the silver medallists in the 200 and 400 IM at the 2010 World Short Course Champ in Dubai. Gold Medallists in both events at the Asian Games in that same year and of course, last year’s Worlds (both events were in China). But of course, we won’t know what she’ll do after London but here’s an example:

The Chinese 200 fly winner from Beijing went on to finish 2nd in Rome in 2009 and third in Shanghai. Her compatriot, the silver medalist in Beijing, finished 5th in Rome and won the race in Shanghai. And guess what? Both will be swimming the same race in London.

Brian
4 years 2 months ago

I mean, she’s been around, but your post is all about females…

No men?

Gary
4 years 2 months ago

“China has a fantastic women’s team, but no men’s team (or next to none). And they go back into hiding after every Olympic Year. It’s very suspicious.”

Your accusations are highly ridiculous, both Zhang Lin and Sun Yang improved between Beijing 2008 and Rome 2009:

Zhang Lin:

2008 Summer Olympics – 2nd (Silver Medalist) 400m freestyle;
2009 World Aquatics Championships – 3rd (Bronze Medalist) 400m freestyle; 3:41,35
2009 World Aquatics Championships – 1st (Gold Medalist) 800m freestyle; World Record 7:32,12

Sun Yang:

2008 Olympics – 28th 400m free, 8th 1500m free
2009 World Championships – 3rd 1500m free
2010 Asian Games – 1st 1500m free (Asian Record)
2011 World Aquatics Championships – 1st 1500m free (World Record), 1st 800m free, 2nd 400m free
2012 Summer Olympics – 1st 400m free (Olympic Record)

Unfortunately Zhang Lin has lost his competitiveness due to asthma.

Gary
4 years 2 months ago

And the Chinese swimming team got better and better results in every olympics and world championships between 2008 and now.

Beijing 2008: 1 gold, 6 medals
Rome 2009: 4 gold, 10 medals (1 gold, 3 medals from men)
Shanghai 2011: 5 gold, 14 medals (2 gold, 5 medals from men)

arrogantprick
4 years 1 month ago

I think many South Koreans would be irate to find out people think Park Tae-hwan is Japanese.

Brian
4 years 1 month ago

Excuse me, I forgot to throw in South Korean in there. I only threw in Park as another example of an Asian swimmer who I highly respect and think is top notch, to throw that silly “racist” idea out the window.

Coach
4 years 2 months ago

Not at all. I think Americans are whole-heartely impressed and respect Sun Yang. The fact that Ye is on par with adult males is what is disturbing. Looking at the women’s relay, no one has said anything about a sub 52 split and performance enhancing drugs because a sub-52 is nowhere near the caliber of what the all time greatest male athletes are doing, and that was a heck of a relay split.

Arthur
4 years 2 months ago

Lochte died in his 400IM. He said himself he went too fast. Compare all 8 splits and it is clear she is no where near the ability of top males.

arrogantprick
4 years 1 month ago

People just believe what they want to believe. Don’t bother with things like facts, logic, data, etc.

REAL
4 years 2 months ago

Ye says “at the 200 I thought the race was lost”, she was sitting 3rd only 0.6 behind the leader Hosszu. If I knew I had a sub-minute back end in me I would still be pretty confident. Surely her training would indicate she could do that?
http://www.swimnews.com/News/view/9628

aswimfan
4 years 2 months ago

I found that comment odd as well.
I am reserving my judgment, and for the time being enjoy it as a truly magnificent swim.

underwater
4 years 2 months ago

Exactly.

4 years 2 months ago

Me too.I will be waiting for a pro/doctorate biomechanic(the guy from swimscience?) make an avaliation about her event.

And lets face it: her strokes are smoothly and her body is not too muscular(like we saw in prior times).But i am really curious about her growth.

Mike Ross
4 years 2 months ago

I found this quote to be funny: “It’s true for breaststroke I am lagging behind but I think my freestyle result is also not that good. Usually I’m very bad at turning. This is one of my worst basic skills but turning is a very important skill therefore I was practicing my turns before the competition.”

Freestyle result, not good?!

She seems to be arguing that by working on her turns, she was able to finish among the best men. I’m taking notes…

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About Davis Wuolle

Davis Wuolle

Davis Wuolle helped found and launch SwimSwam at its inception in 2012. Davis designed and developed SwimSwam.com, utilizing over nine years of web development and design experience.Davis graduated in 2013 from the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, Canada where he specialized in Materials Engineering with a focus on Product …

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