Chinese National Games: Pang Jiaying Sets Asian Record

JINAN, China, October 22. AN Asian record, and two national records, fell during long course competition at the Chinese National Games held in Jinan today.

Pang Jiaying claimed the women's 100 free Asian record with a swift time of 53.13. She posted a 25.81 at the 50-meter mark. Her performance broke the previous Asian record of 53.84 set by Zhu Yingwen at the 2008 Beijing Olympics. Zhu wound up taking second today with a 53.86, while Tang Yi placed third in 53.88.

Zhang Jishan lowered his national record in the men's 200 IM with a winning effort of 1:58.53, downing his previous best of 1:58.82 set in June 2009. Liu Weijia took second overall in 2:00.28, while Zhao Tao touched third in 2:00.31.

Qi Hui dropped her women's 200 breast Chinese record even further with a time of 2:21.37. That readout erased her previous national mark of 2:22.99 set back in 2001. Ji Liping placed second in 2:23.83, while Zhao Jin took third in 2:24.29.

Meanwhile, Zhang Fenglin captured the men's 200 back crown in 1:58.17. Cheng Feiyi (2:01.25) and Xia Jiale (2:01.90) completed the podium with second and third-place finishes.

The 2009 Chinese National Games are also using a hybrid qualification system for finals. While the fastest 16 swimmers in prelims advance to the semifinal round, the top eight final spots are not selected solely on the semifinal round. The final field for an event is selected by the top eight times from both prelims and semis, a system which China began using at the 2005 Chinese National Games. The rationale behind the move is to help swimmers develop a mentality of not holding back in any race.

Special thanks to Swimming World correspondent Christopher Chow for providing the English translation of the results found below:

Women's 100 free:
(1) Pang Jiaying (Shanghai) 53.13 (50m split: 25.81)
(Asian record, previous record 53.84 by Zhu Yingwen from August 2008, Beijing Olympics semi0finals)
(2) Zhu Yingwen (Shanghai) 53.86
(3) Tang Yi (Shanghai) 53.88
(4) Li Zhesi (Liaoning) 53.96
All 8 finalists broke 55. Butterfly specialist Zhou Yafei (Liberation Army) was 8th at 54.84.

Men's 200 IM:
(1) Zhang Jishan (Guangxi) 1:58.53 (splits: 26.20, 57.35, 1:30.66, 1:58.53)
(National record, previous record 1:58.82 by Zhang Jishan from June 2009 in Tianjin)
(2) Liu Weijia (Liaoning) 2:00.28
(3) Zhao Tao (Liberation Army) 2:00.31

Men's 200 back:
(1) Zhang Fenglin (Shandong) 1:58.17
(2) Cheng Feiyi (Liaoning) 2:01.25
(3) Xia Jiale (Shandong) 2:01.90

Women's 200 breast:
(1) Qi Hui (Liberation Army) 2:21.37 (splits: 32.71, 1:07.98, 1:45.75, 2:21.37)
(National record, previous record 2:22.99 by Qi Hui from April 2001 in Hangzhou)
(2) Ji Liping (Shanghai) 2:23.83
(3) Zhao Jin (Shanxi) 2:24.29
(4) Shi lin (Jiangxu) 2:24.80
(5) Wang Qun (Shandong) 2:26.01