ZUMO Performance of the Week: Ye Shiwen Posts World Leading 200 Breast

Ye Shiwen at the 2017 Indy Pro Swim Series, Photo Courtesy: Melissa Lundie

This week’s ZUMO Performance of the Week goes to China’s Ye Shiwen, who posted the #1 ranked time in the world in the 200 breast at the 2019 FINA Champions Swim Series.

Swimming in Guangzhou in the first-ever Champions Swim Series, Ye dropped a second from her best time in the 200 breast to post a 2:22.53 that knocked nearly a second off her lifetime best. The time also slipped by Canadian Sydney Pickrem’s 2:22.63 from Canadian Nationals.

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While the time itself was not the most impressive that came out of the Champions Swim Series (it took a sub-2:22 to medal in the event at 2017 Worlds), it is definitely head-turning given Ye Shiwen’s career trajectory over the past two Olympic cycles.

After winning double gold at the 2012 London Olympics in the 200 and 400 IM, the former world record holder has not had a major international podium appearance in any event outside the 2014 Asian Games. Her highest finish at the 2016 Rio Olympics was eighth in the 200 IM, and she did not make the final of the 400 IM.

But in 2019, Ye Shiwen has seen some steady improvements. At the most recent Chinese Nationals she posted her fastest 200 IM since Rio (2:09.24) that also sits as the #3 time in world for 2019, and she has posted multiple best times in both the 100 and 200 breast this season.

The 23-year old has always been known for backstroke and her freestyle, so if Ye is able to translate her newfound breaststroke strength back into her IM’s she can once again become a major medal threat on the world stage.

Congratulations to Ye Shiwen on earning ZUMO’s Performance of the Week!