Monday stood as day 6 in the pool at the 2013 Chinese National Games in Liaoning Province, and the Chinese continued to excel with huge prizes on the line. Specifically, another National Record went down, in prelims of the 50 free, though nobody was able to match it in the semi-finals.
Women’s 200 breast – FINALS
Shi Jinglin gave Jiangsu their first gold medal of the meet with a 2:24.57 in the women’s 200 breaststroke. This is one of the weaker events, depth-wise, for the Chinese women, though this swim was about a full second faster than Shi was at the World Championships to finish 9th and just miss the final.
Shi’s swim was largely unimpressive if it weren’t for one leg: on her third 50 meters, she split 36.29, which was the fastest non-lead-off split of the entire field, to put a suddenly huge gap in between herself and runner-up Zhao Jin, who closed well to a 2:26.66.
Shaanxi’s He Yun took 3rd in 2:27.54.
Men’s 200 back – FINALS
Xu Jiaxu from Zhejiang put Zhejiang back in the win column on Monday, taking the men’s 200 back in 1:56.67. He was actually in 2nd place at the last turn, but closing in 29.74 ran down Zhang Fenglin, who was 2nd in 1:57.62 (after closing in 31.19 – about the slowest closing 50 in the final).
Liaoning’s Chen Feiyi took bronze in 1:58.48.
Men’s 200 IM – FINALS
Wang Shun added a win in the 200 IM to his earlier victory in the 400 IM, though this time it was without a National Record, swimming 1:57.71 on Monday evening. He led this race wire-to-wire, though his front and closing legs are his best. Sitting behind him in 2nd throughout the race was Hunan’s Yang Zhixian in 1:58.62 and Wang’s teammate Mao Feilian in 1:59.78.
Those were the only three swimmers under the two minute barrier in the race.
Women’s 100 free – FINALS
After putting up a surprisingly-good silver medal finish in the women’s 100 free, Chen Xinyi took a win in her best event, the 100 free, in 53.84. She came home in a big way on the National Record holder Tang Yi, who was 53.87, and 3rd-place finisher Pang Jiaying in 54.04.
For the first time in a while, this Chinese 400 free relay is starting to look like a medal threat again, and the epicenter is in Shanghai: those three medalists all train together, as did the 8th place finisher in this 100 free.
- Ning Zetao already had a National Record in the 100 free to his name from this meet, and on Monday morning in prelims, he swam a 21.91 to break another, this time in the 50 free. His swim broke the Asian and National Records set by Runqiang Shi in 2009. In the semi-finals, he remained the top seed in 21.99. Lu Zhiwu from Zhejiang took the 2nd seed, swimming next to Ning, in 22.37, followed by Ban Bao from Laoning in 22.54.
- Liao Yali crushed the field in the semi-final of the women’s 200 back, going a 2:08.70. Li Yuanwas the next-best in 2:10.21.
- Shi Feng from Shanghai took the top seed in 52.59, followed by Zhang Qibing in 52.77. Star Wu Peng, who is completing his career at this meet, is the 3rd seed in 52.87.
- In the women’s 800 free prelims, now-17 year old Xin Xin took the top seed in 8:29.82, followed by 200/400 champion Cao Yue in 8:29.93. Zhang Yuan of the People’s Liberation Army took 3rd in 8:30.60.
Zhejiang continued to roll with two more gold medals in four events on Monday, but Shanghai had a great day as well after sweeping the women’s 100 free.
Note: Shanxi and Shaanxi are two different teams.