CHINESE LONG COURSE INVITATIONAL
- Thursday, December 31st – Sunday, January 3rd
- Shijiazhuang City, China
- LCM (50m)
- SwimSwam Preview
- Day 1 Prelims Recap
- Results via Asian Media
The finals of day 1 of this by-invite-only Chinese Long Course meet in Shijiazhuang City brought even more impressive swimming from a few key names within the nation.
As a reminder, prelims are taking place in the evening while finals are slated for each morning session, giving athletes a taste of the timing that will be place come the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games this July.
Yesterday we saw 22-year-old Zhang Yufei rip a menacing double of 2:05.70 in the 200m fly and 24.31 in the 50m free to claim the top seed in each. Although she wound up being 1 for 2 in terms of golds during this morning’s finals, the 2018 Asian Games champion still produced some head-turning swims.
In the 200m fly, Zhang dropped .21 from yesterday’s prelim to hit the wall this morning in 2:05.49 and top the podium. That beat out the next closest swimmer of Zhang Yifan by over 3 seconds, with the latter touching in 2:08.51 as runner-up.
With Zhang’s time (splits unavailable at time of publishing), she further solidifies herself as the premier Chinese 200m flyer, topping the overall world rankings for this season while also maintaining her spot as the nation’s 4th fastest performer all-time.
For additional perspective, her time here in this final crushes the 2:06.61 she produced in Jakarta to take the 2018 Asian Games title in the event and blows the uncharacteristic 2:14.20 she logged in Gwangju at last year’s World Championships out of the water.
22-year-old Zhang’s times between last night’s prelim and this morning’s final also overtake her own previous lifetime best of 2:06.17 from 2017.
In the women’s 50m free final this morning, however, it was national record holder Liu Xiang who got to the wall first. She touched in a winning effort of 24.62, only .03 ahead of Zhang’s 24.65. The pair represented the only women to get under the 25-second barrier.
Liu owns the Chinese national standard with the 24.03 she logged in January of 2020 while competing in the FINA Champions Series. She currently ranks as the world’s 3rd fastest 50m freestyle this season with a mark of 24.45 from last September’s Chinese Nationals.
As for Zhang, she was quicker in last night’s prelim where she captured the top seed in a 24.31 scorcher, overtaking her previous PB of 24.83 from 2017. That 24.31 tops the world rankings for the season.
A big-time 200m IM was thrown down this morning by 2016 Olympic medalist Wang Shun. The 26-year-old crushed a 1:56.50 stunner to represent the only racer under 2:00 in this morning’s final.
Although splits are not yet available, Wang’s 1:56.50 ranks as the man’s 4th fastest effort of all-time. He owns the Chinese national record with the 1:56.16 he logged at the 2017 Chinese Championships and his gold medal-worthy swim here falls less than half a second away.
Wang’s time here also nears his world-leading 1:56.27 he produced last September at the Chinese Championships, a time which represents his 2nd fastest to date.
Wang took bronze in Rio in this 200m IM event and produced the same result the following year at the FINA World Championships. The man upgraded to gold in the 2IM at the 2018 Asian Games but settled for 6th at last year’s World Championships in Gwangju, Korea.
Bronze medalist in the 1500m free at last year’s World Championships, Wang Jianjiahe, was also in the water this morning, producing a time of 4:05.13 to reap 400m free gold. That result managed to just outswim a charging Tang Muhan who touched in a silver medal-worthy 4:05.68.
Last night Wang produced a world-leading 4:03.02 to claim the top seed, a performance which overtook her own previous season-best of 4:04.46 from September’s Chinese National Championships.
The men’s 50m free prelim from last night saw Yu Hexin as the only man under 22 seconds, posting a top-seeded time of 21.93. However, this morning he was just off the mark, but still got to the wall first in a time of 22.00.
Yu owns the Chinese record of 21.79 posted just this past September, making him the nation’s only other sub-22 50 freestyler besides the original Ning Zetao. That result rendered him as the 4th fastest performer in the world this season.
Before this meet, 16-year-old Tang Qianting had never before been under 1:08.66 in the women’s 100m breast, but she blew that mark out of the water both in last night’s prelim as well as this morning’s final. The teen took the top seed last night in a mark of 1:06.40 and was slightly slower this morning to top the podium in 1:06.87.
The teen’s 1:06.40 from last night checks her in as China’s 3rd fastest performer all-time in the event.
All-Time Chinese Women LCM 100 Breaststroke Performers:
- Ji Liping – 1:05.32, 2009
- Shi Jinglin – 1:06.28, 2015
- Tang Qianting – 1:06.40, 2020
- National record holder Yan Zibei put up a time of 59.59 in the men’s 100m breast this morning for gold. Yan owns the Chinese record and Asian record in this event with the 58.63 he threw down in Gwangju last year, good enough for the bronze medal.
- The men’s 200m fly saw Wang Zhou get it done for gold in 1:58.30, while Ji Xinjie took the men’s 400m free in 3:47.26.