CCTV.com - CNTV English - CCTV News

Park wins men's 400 freestyle gold at worlds

07-25-2011 08:01 BJT

SHANGHAI - Olympic champion Park Tae-hwan upset the parochial home crowd to lead from virtually start to finish to win the men's 400 metres freestyle gold medal at the world swimming championships on Sunday.

China's silver medallist Sun Yang, South Korea's gold medallist Park Tae-Hwan and Germany's bronze medallist Paul Biedermann (L-R) pose with their medals after the men's 400m freestyle final at the 14th FINA World Championships in Shanghai July 24, 2011. [Photo/Agencies]

South Korea's Park Tae-hwan competes in the men's 400m freestyle heats at the 14th FINA World Championships in Shanghai July 24, 2011. [Photo/Agencies]

South Korea's Park Tae-hwan reacts after winning the men's 400m freestyle final at the 14th FINA World Championships in Shanghai July 24, 2011. [Photo/Agencies]

China's Sun Yang competes in the men's 400m freestyle final at the 14th FINA World Championships in Shanghai July 24, 2011. [Photo/Agencies]

China's Sun Yang competes in the men's 400m freestyle final at the 14th FINA World Championships in Shanghai July 24, 2011. [Photo/Agencies]

China's Sun Yang adjusts his silver medal for the men's 400m freestyle final at the 14th FINA World Championships in Shanghai July 24, 2011. [Photo/Agencies]

The 21-year-old Park had only just scraped into the final, qualifying seventh, and was forced to swim in lane one from where he surprised the field to take an early lead that he only relinquished temporarily at the 200-metres mark.

"I am glad to swim in lane one, which allowed me to fully concentrate on my own tempo and not to get distracted from the competition," Park told reporters after clocking 3:42:04 on his way to victory.

Local favourite Sun Yang, who had recorded the fastest time of the year after he clocked 3:41.48 at the Chinese national championships in April, seemed content to sit behind the leaders and trust his kick, but was unable to reel in the Korean and finished second in 3:43.24.

"I have always considered him (Park) a strong competitor," Sun said. "The heats this morning showed that this is a high level competition (and it is) very good training for me ahead of the London Olympics."

Rome champion Paul Biedermann, who had broken Ian Thorpe's long standing 400 record in one of the now banned polyurethane suits in 2009, took bronze in 3:44.14.

It was a sweet redemption for Park, who had failed to qualify for the men's 400 metres freestyle final at the last world championships in Rome, despite being Olympic champion.

He had given South Korea its first Olympic swimming gold medal in Beijing and had been expected to take up the mantle of the then retired Thorpe as the dominant force in the men's 400.

After two years of hiccups, Sunday's victory suggested that he again could be the man to fill the Australian's shoes at the London Olympics next year.

Editor:Wang Chuhan |Source: China Daily

Hot Videos view more

The celebrations are still continuing as the victorious coach, Joachim Loew, has been honored for his achievement in his hometown of Freiburg.
Germany coach Loew honored in hometown of Freiburg

Chinese men´s national team continued its preparations for next year´s Asian Cup, as they managed a one-all draw against visitors Jordan during a football friendly in Harbin, the capital city of Northeast China´s Heilongjiang Province.
China held to 1-1 draw by Jordan

The defending world champs came into the contest with a perfect 6-and-oh record, but they would be in for a tough first half before opening things up in the second.
USA beat Slovenia 119-76 in quarter-finals

Hot Stories more

UK authorities believe killer of James Foley is a British national

Across the UK the hunt is on for James Foley’s killer, who authorities believe is a British national. As Richard Bestic reports from London, Prime Minister David Cameron cut short his summer break to lead his government’s response.

Israeli war jets renews Gaza strike as truce talks stalled

Three Palestinians were killed and 40 others wounded in the intensive Israeli war jets´ airstrikes on the Gaza city on Tuesday night, shortly before an end of a 24-hour ceasefire in the Gaza Strip,

Missouri police arrest dozens after violent night

As the protests in the town of Ferguson, Missouri turned violent with police facing ´heavy gunfire´ from some ´criminal elements´, cops fired tear gas, stun grenades and arrested 31 demonstrators on Monday night.

Picture in news more

More Video News

Choose TV Program