TANGSHAN, CHN, December 15. ELITE 2004 long course swimming came to a close here with some solid performances in China’s Fall Championships, which also included a smattering of winning Australian visitors.
The strongest swim was turned in by Gao Chang in the women’s 50 backstroke at :28.48, just .23 off the 2000 world record of Germany’s Sandra Voelker. Her performance qualified for 995 FINA rating points.
The best men’s performance also happened to be in one of the closest races of the meet. Wu Peng, 17, out touched another teenager, Zhao Tao, 19, in the 200 IM, 2:01.08 to 2:01.12. Wu doubled with a 400 IM win as well at 4:17.16.
Yang Yu was sub-2:00 to win the women’s 200 freestyle in 1:59.45 and breaststroke specialist Qi Hui put 2:14.26 up for the 200 IM win to go with 1:09.71 in the 100 breast. Zhang Xin won the 400 IM at 4:46.97, ahead of two others at 4:48.51 or better under 4:48.6.
The next best men’s swims were probably Ouyang Kunpeng at :55.09 in the 100 back and Ju Zhixiang at 15:24.18 in the 1500.
The small visiting contingent of Aussies included Athens 100 fly finalist Jessica Schipper who got a close win in her specialty :59.61 over :59.75 from Zhou Yafei and :59.82 from Xu Yanwei. Aussie Melissa Gorman got the 800 free win in a close battle with Zheng Jing, 8:39.92 to 8:40.06.