PHOENIX, Arizona, December 20. BRAZILIAN swimming was hit hard Wednesday with the news that two more swimmers have tested positive for banned substances. Diego Prado and Leonardo Sumida both tested positive at the Brazil Open last month, Prado for the steroid stanozol, and Sumida for marijuana consumption. Prado had been on Brazil's roster for the short course world championships but the release of his positive drug test report meant being replaced on the team by Felipe Lima in the 50 breaststroke. According to our South American correspondent Alex Pussieldi, these are the 10th and 11th positive drug tests for Brazilian swimming in two years, a black mark for the country about to host the 2016 Olympics.
In much lighter news today, FINA announced an extension of its partnership with probiotic milk maker Yakult through 2018. Yakult's logo is very prominent at the world championships, particularly on the caps of all the athletes, which became a requirement in 2007. The Tokyo-based company has enjoyed decades of success in Asia, Australia and parts of Europe, with a United States headquarters opening earlier this year.
As I mentioned on yesterday's show, the Salnikov Cup begins tomorrow in St. Petersburg, Russia, and it is going to be a star-studded lineup this year. No fewer than 14 swimmers at the meet won medals at the 2012 Olympics, including 200 breast champion Daniel Gyurta. Vladimir Morozov, who had a great short course worlds, will keep up his momentum in his native country. The meet also features the Salnikov Mile, named in honor of Russian swimming federation president and Olympic champion Vladimir Salnikov. The race goes like this: the slowest swimmer after 50 meters following the 1000-meter mark is eliminated from the competition, with the fastest swimmer getting the final 50 meters all to himself. We'll bring you recaps from the meet on swimmingworld.com.