Ye Shiwen’s speed stuns the swimming world
THERE is no reason to suspect foul play over China’s latest swimming sensation Ye Shiwen, according to the IOC’s medical chief.
Sixteen-year-old Shiwen took five seconds off her personal best and more than a second off the world record when she captured gold in the 400m individual medley.
Her performance was described as “insanely fast” by previous world record holder Stephanie Rice and in the final, Ye swam faster than the men’s champion Ryan Lochte.
IOC medical commission chairman Arne Ljungqvist, a veteran anti-doping competitor, did not express any concerns when asked if he had any suspicions regarding the swimmers in London.
“I am pretty experienced in this matter, as you know, and have been at the Games since a long time and within anti doping for 40 years,” she said.
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“Should I have my suspicions I keep them for myself, first of all, and take any action, if so, in order to find out whether something is wrong or not.
“You ask me specifically about this particular swimming. I say no, I have not personally any reason other than to applaud what has happened, until I have further facts, if so.”
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China’s past record is poor when it comes to doping and during the 1990s they had 40 swimmers test positive for banned substances, and seven before the Beijing Games in 2008.
Last month, 16-year-old world champion in the 4x100m medley Li Zhesi tested positive for the blood boosting drug EPO.
Rice, from Australia, would not be drawn on whether she thought Ye was legitimate.
She said: “I have no idea, I mean I wouldn’t want to get into that at all, but a 58 is an insanely fast swim, but I know she’s a good freestyle swimmer.
“I swam next to her at worlds in the 200 IM last year and she came home over the top of me in that freestyle leg and I’m not exactly a bad freestyler, so she’s a gun in freestyle.”
Ye was easily quickest in the 200m individual medley this morning, in which she is world champion, her time of two minutes 08.90 seconds, 1.61secs ahead of Kirsty Coventry.