Sun Yang Blasts 3:42 400 Free at Chinese National Championships

Photo Courtesy: Rob Schumacher-USA TODAY Sports

Chinese Olympic gold medalist Sun Yang is again on top of the world rankings in the men’s 400 free as he posted a 3:42.16 at the Chinese National Championships, according to a report from the Xinhua News Agency.

Sun was the 2012 Olympic gold medalist in both the 400 and 1500 free and won gold in the 200 free in Rio, but he finished a close second behind Mack Horton in the 400-meter distance. But his time puts him well ahead of Gabriele Detti (3:43.36) and Horton (3:44.18) in the early world rankings for 2017.

Sun admitted to Xinhua after the race that beating Horton’s time had definitely been a target.

“The timing is satisfying,” he said. “I keep my eyes open for the ongoing Australian National Championships and I will try my best to outpace these swimmers. All of us are preparing for the World Championships.”

Also in China, Yan Zibei became the first Chinese man to break 59 in the 100 breast, stopping the clock at 58.92. So far this year, only Olympic gold medalist Adam Peaty (58.86) has been quicker.

Yan figures to be a key part of a Chinese 400 medley relay team with a chance at a medal at this summer’s World Championships. Others on that team could be 100 back Olympic silver medalist Xu Jiayu, 100 fly Olympic finalist Li Zhuhao and 100 free World Champion Ning Zetao.

In the women’s 400 free, Li Bingjie took the win, but various sources have reported her time differently. Xinhua reports she swam a 4:10.22, while both SwimVortex reports her time as 4:02.52, which would be the fastest in the world this year.

Read more from Xinhua by clicking here.


  1. Halim Yussuf

    Sun Hang is the distance king.

  2. avatar

    He is actually targetting Mac Horton.

  3. Saju Mohan

    He is targetting Mac Horton for his insulting statements after Rio.

    • Michael Buna

      Why is the truth “insulting”??

    • Saju Mohan

      Sun yang’s technic is certainly better than that of Horton ,ie y

    • Jerome Elliott

      In your opinion Sanju, with what coaching credentials do you make that observation?

    • Saju Mohan

      Swimming basics..Sir.. Perfect streamlining,nice and perfect early vertical high elbow catch(both arms), good head possition,(better than Horton)and I think it’s difficult to achieve good high elbow in that head possion.his firm pull synchronous with his leg beat is a delight to watch,which makes him very energy efficient.(Hortons kicking is awkward). Horton uses Shere strength.not bad but I think technic is more important .sun yang can improve a lot as he is blessed with good height..Longest wingspan and stroke length, all combined with good technic especially in 1500.

    • Saju Mohan

      And ofcourse a real champion never speak ill of others , whomever may be.thats the spirit of sportsmanship.

    • Enoch Hui

      Saju, I agree that Sun Yang is likely faster than Horton in the 400m. But nonetheless:
      i) Despite all the supposed better technique by Yang, Horton is the olympic champion. I think any swimmer would prefer being the champ than having alleged better technique but with a silver medal.
      ii) Sun Yang doesn’t exact exemplify the spirit of sportsmanship lol…he is renowned throughout swimming circles for his arrogance and his controversial behaviour – such as the allegations of him assaulting a Brazilian swimmer. If Horton doesn’t exhibit sportsmanship, then Sun Yang definitely doesn’t either.

    • Michael Buna

      A “real champion” would NEVER take drugs and would NEVER need to take drugs to win an event!!
      Yes he has some good technique BUT the first chance he had to beat others without drugs he failed and was beaten by a better swimmer

    • Saju Mohan

      U r rt but,the substance he took is vasodilator , which is far away from any steroid.he took it as a medicine for his heart disease in 2014.this medicine is legal since 2014.with out knowing this and with doctors prescription he took the medicine.this can happen to anyone.but the sad thing is that he went to depression and abstain from pool for a long time .He was denied the service of his favourite Australian coach.

    • Saju Mohan

      Everyone wants to cling to this perticular doping theory against him.But I am sure those who love long distance swimming have a lot to learn from him.And think he has a great potential which is still to explore.and I don’t think he need any drug to beat technically inferior Horton.

  4. Michael Buna

    Has this time been varified??? Or is it just reported in Chinese media which cannot be believed anyway????
    Also when was the last time he was drug tested?????

    • avatar

      And the time is verified on FINA’s website

  5. Ursula Bentley

    So how often is he tested whilst he trains in Australia, given his history?

    • Rich Davis

      I’m not sure he trains there any more after his drug conviction. Chinese swimming apparently pay Dennis Cotterell $1 million to coach their athletes in Miami.

    • Ursula Bentley

      Yes, that would be Miami on the Gold Coast, Australia

    • Saju Mohan

      Dennis CottereL cannot train him any more and sun yang cannot enter in any government aided pool in AUS.( info from youtube )

    • Ursula Bentley

      Miami is no longer a government aided pool. No longer a podium club and yes the Chinese team have been training there

  6. avatar

    Secret sauce seems to be working again.

  7. Bob Perkins

    Not done yet, by any means…

    • Zane Shi

      We don’t have the foundations like the US in swimming.

  8. Rick Avila

    If only he had the personality to go with his great ability.

  9. David Barton

    He’s the Barry Bonds of swimming.

  10. Wawa Elbos

    Okay mb Badreddine Loulidi

  11. avatar
    beth kostigan

    He’s a drug cheat who was coached by a fraud.

  12. Tommy Wilson

    Dylan Stevens god is back ?????❤?❤

    • Dylan Stevens

      Boys with birthmarks ??❤??❤?❤?

  13. avatar

    Lmao at all these swimming bums calling Sun a drug cheat.
    No matter how many drugs you take you bums will never come close to his swimming feats. And yes he is the best distance swimmer by far in this generation.

  14. Dieckvoß Rainer

    Nehme ich nicht mehr ernst, Dopingsünder…öde !!

  15. avatar

    There’s no doubt that he is a great swimmer.

  16. avatar

    Sun won 400 free gold medal in London Olympics with 3:40:14 when he was 20. Horton’s pb is 3:41:55,he never swim under 3:41:00 yet.

    Sun tested postive 3 years ago at the Chinese championships , neither Olympics nor the word champions . He has no need to cheat because he always win others 7 seconds or even more in 1500 free in china .He took medicine just for his heart disease.and the stimulant trimetazidine, which had been added to the banned list four months earlier.

    Sun proved with sufficient evidence that he did not intend to cheat, So his ban reduced to three months

  17. Saju Mohan

    anybody interested in talking abt his technic , compare his technic with Horton,Hackket, Ryan Cochrane etc? that this discussion become useful to those who r interested swimming than doping.