Chinese Long Course Nationals: Sun Yang Clocks World-Leader in 1500 Free

SHAOXING, China, April 7. SUN Yang cruised to a world-leading time in the men's 1500 free during the next-to-last day of the Chinese Long Course Nationals being held in Shaoxing.

Sun captured the metric mile in 14:42.30 for his fourth victory of the meet (200, 400, 800, 1500 free), and crushed the previous world pacesetting time of 14:47.38 logged by Tae Hwan Park in February. Sun's time this evening is the 14th fastest of all time, and gives Sun four of the top 15 times ever in the event.

Sun owns the world record with a 14:34.14 from the 2011 World Championships, when he broke the legendary Grant Hackett world record of 14:34.56 – one of the few to survive the techsuit era.

Hao Yun placed second in the metric mile with a 14:58.44 to move to fourth in the world behind Daniel Fogg's 14:55.30 from British Trials, and likely earn himself the second Olympic spot in the event with his FINA A cut time. Dai Jun wound up third in 15:09.39.

Sun Ye claimed the women's 100 breast title in 1:07.30 to move to seventh in the world rankings, while Liu Xiaoyu finished second in 1:07.88. Ji Liping made the finale even more interesting with a third-place time of 1:07.90 as the top three all cleared the FINA A cut in the event. Liu jumped to 15th in the world with her swim, while Ji took 16th overall.

Yin Fan likely punched her ticket to the Olympics in the women's 50 free with a FINA A cut time of 25.24 for the win, while Tang Yi (25.30) and Xu Wen (25.37) just missed the FINA A cut (25.27) en route to second and third-place finishes.

Shi Yang won the men's 50 free with a provisional Olympic qualifying time of 22.51, while Lu Zhiwu (22.69) and He Jianbin (22.83) took second and third.

Yu Yaping cruised to victory in the women's 200 back with a 2:09.71 to move to 14th in the world rankings, and clear the FINA A cut of 2:10.84. Bai Anqi likely secured the second Olympic spot for China with a FINA A cut second-place time of 2:10.05. Yao Yige finished just outside the top two with a 2:10.22, also under the FINA A cut.

Zhao Jing, who earned an Olympic bronze medal as part of China's third-place 400 medley relay at the 2008 Beijing Games as well as won the 100 back world title last summer, has yet to qualify for the Olympic squad. She finished 12th in the women's 200 back prelims today with a time of 2:14.20 and could miss the Olympic squad.

China, however, has repeatedly stated that this meet is not the final deciding point for the team it will nominate for the Olympics. As the local media has continued to cover, former Chinese golden boy Zhang Lin likely missed his chance at the Olympic team this week. There is a slim glimmer of hope for Zhang, and others like Zhao, heading into the summer as stated by Chinese officials. Tonight, Zhang took sixth in the men's 1500 free with a 15:17.97 to move to 22nd in the world rankings.

“We will not take this meet as the final word for selection,” Deputy Director Shang Xiutang told local reporters. “It is just a part of a series of selection criteria that is part of a comprehensive assessment program.”

Guangdong won the men's 400 medley relay in 3:36.86, while Shanghai (3:38.47) and Beijing (3:42.05) completed the top three.