China’s Wang Shun had a great first four days at the 2013 Chinese National Championships (long course edition), finishing runner-up in the 200 free and the 200 fly.
His meet got even better, though, on Friday when he broke a National Record in the 200 IM with a 1:57.50. That broke the three-year old record of 1:58.54 held by Zhang Zishan.
Mao Feilian was 2nd in 1:59.63.
Shun now ranks as the 11th-best swimmer of all-time, the 3rd-fastest on the Asian continent, and just .15 behind Japan’s Kosuke Hagino from last summer’s Olympics as the fastest Asian ever in textile.
Shortly thereafter, in the men’s 100 free final, another National Record went down to relative newcomer Ning Zetao, who swam a 48.60. The Chinese men have been pretty miserable in the sprint freestyles, but the results of this final indicate that it’s surely at least somewhere that the federation is putting a lot of focus.
(Note: Zetao was suspended for one year in early 2011 after testing positive for Clenbuterol.)
Taoze’s swim broke the old record of 48.73 set by Chen Zuo back in 2009. The runner-up Lu Zhiwu was almost at the old record as well in 48.86, and She Hexin was 3rd in 49.12. Of those three, Zhiwu was the only one who swam on their 11th-place relay at last summer’s Olympics. In Barcelona, making the top 8 and getting into the final would be a more-than-reasonable goal for that relay.
In the women’s races, Jiao Liuyang took the latest page out of her butterfly rivalry with World Record holder Liu Zige, Liuyang took the 200 meter race in 2:05.87, with Zige placing 2nd in 2:07.10. Those are the two fastest times in the world this year; nobody has been within two seconds of the two this year.
And finally, in the women’s 50 backstroke, Fu Yuanhui won the women’s 50 back in 27.22 – less than two tenths off of the National Record. Liu Xiang was 2nd in 27.76, and Gao Chang 3rd in 28.13. Zhao Jing, China’s best backstroker, withdrew from this 50 meter final reporting that she didn’t feel well after the 100.