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More Caught

Three Chinese swimmers have been disqualified from a domestic competition for failing blood tests.

The Beijing Youth Daily said Tan Caini, China's top-ranked women's 200 meters freestyler last year and two men, 400 meters freestyler Liu Gang and 100 meters breaststroker Xia Shichao, were barred at the City Games in Xi'an during September.

The China Sports Daily quoted an official of the Chinese Swimming Association as saying the concentration of red cells in their blood was over the permitted limit. They had only been disqualified from the games and not banned, he said. It quoted their coaches as saying the blood test results were due to recent training at high altitude.

China introduced blood tests in domestic sports, especially in swimming, after numerous Chinese swimmers were banned for drugs by the International Amateur Swimming Federation (FINA), the official said.

FINA banned Chinese swimmers Wang Wei and Xiong Guoming for three years in August after they tested positive for the banned drug clenbuterol.

In September, FINA gave another four Chinese swimmers four-year bans for doping offences.

Terry Gathercole, president of the Australian swimming body, said the latest positive tests were further proof China had a serious doping problem.

"It's gone wild," Gathercole said. "If they're finding those in their own domestic program, I would say that it's pretty rampant."

FINA World Cup

Prize money will be awarded to the highest scorer in each event (max 6 events to score) rather than the former method of scoring two of three backstrokes etc.

Prize money will be as follows:
1st place US $4,000 x 34 events = 136,000
2nd place US $2,000 x 34 events = 68,000
3rd place US $1,000 x 34 events = 34,000 for an overall total of US $238,000.

A maximum of US $40,000 will be available for world records. Each record is worth US $4,000.

Two World Cup venue changes: Shanghai rather than Beijing for World Cup 4, Berlin rather than Gelsenkirchen for World Cup 9.

Other news: FINA is considering whether or not the use of the "long johns" swimsuits will be permitted at FINA events.


Allen Stack, a Yale graduate and winner of the 1948 Olympic gold in the men's 100 backstroke, died in his home in Honolulu on September 12.

He was suffering from bone cancer for the past year and missed the 100th anniversary reunion of swimming at Yale last year.

At 6 feet 5 inches and 215 pounds Stack was the first prominent backstroker to swim with a bent arm. His success with this technique eventually became the norm.

In addition to his 1948 Olympic win, he won at the first Pan American Games in 1951 in Buenos Aires. He won 10 American national titles (7 individual and 3 medley relays). He also competed at the 1952 Olympics, finishing fourth.

World records:
(In 25 yard pools, as was customary in his time)

100 metres backstroke
1:04.0 New Haven, Jun.23,1948
1:03.6 New Haven, Feb.4,1949

150 yards backstroke
1:29.9 New Haven, May 5,1949

400 metres backstroke
5:03.9 New Haven, Feb.14,1948

Stack was born in Jan 23, 1928, in New Haven, graduated from Yale in 1949, spent 1951 to 1954 in the Navy, and graduated from Columbia University Law School in 1956. He moved to Honolulu and practiced law there until illness forced him to retire.

Veteran swimming writer Frank Litsky wrote in the New York Times Sep. 19 edition how a friend and former Yale swimmer Everett MacLeman of Guilford, Connecticut, recalled Stack:

"Seconds before the starting gun in the 1948 final, he was in the water and pulled up his trunks. The cord broke and the trunks started to slip off. He hollered to the starter, who let him get out of the water and into new trunks that stayed up, and he became Yale's first-ever Olympic gold medal swimmer."

In 1952, Stack tried to retain his Olympic title, but just before the event he fell off a motor scooter. Swimming with a bandaged hand, he finished fourth. He was inducted into the International Swimming Hall of Fame in 1979.

Stack had written to his wife that he had hurt his hand on a turn. "I thought it was a swimming turn, not a motor-scooter turn," his wife remembered.

He is survived by his wife Elizabeth Loy Marks of Honolulu, a son, and two daughters.


I guess you thought some years ago that I had dropped off the face of the earth! My life has been busy with lots of ups and downs like most people.

Sorry I never responded with a letter to the Editor after Howard (Firby) passed away - I appreciated the copies you sent to me of the various ones you had printed. I still have them tucked away in my swimming files.

SWIMNEWS has certainly flourished and the style of it and articles are as professional as one can get-tardy congratulations! There are fewer and fewer names that I recognize, swimming goes on, times get faster and faster, rules change etc. - but it's still a fantastic sport and I read the mag with great interest.

My daughter Jeanne who you may remember, and her husband Glenn who was a great triathlete, have 3 children, the youngest of which is madly in love with swimming - Erika Carlsen, currently 10 and under, her name was in SWIMNEWS a few months back (I forget which event). So swimming goes on in my family.

Did you know - my aunt, Mabel McNamee was the first woman in Quebec to receive the RLSS award, 2nd in Canada. My father Ben McNamee missed trying out for the Olympics because he had to take the bus during lunch hour to the pool for the trials and he missed the event, 440 yards breaststroke. He was Canadian Champion in 1925 in that event in a time of 7:13 2/5 - I have the medal, and that is how it is engraved-14k gold yet! Just a few interesting facts, so Erika might have the right genes!

I still have Norman Cox's book on swimming, would you like it? I am not sure where all this kind of historical stuff is kept. Please advise when you have a minute.

I was married in January this year and have moved to the Okanagan country in B.C., new name: Kaye Ferguson Neale. Son Dave and his family are still in Richmond B.C. where I moved from, but no swimmers in his family, so far.

Jeanne's two daughters, Erika who I mentioned, and Laura-Kaye were at Akomak this summer, they were booked in for a month and loved it so much that they stayed another 3 weeks! Jeanne sent me some pictures, one of the girls with Buck Dawson. The world gets smaller....

Sorry to be so long away.

Kaye Ferguson (McNamee) Neale
Penticton, BC

Kaye McNamee was a member of Canada's Olympic Team in 1948-52 and the Commonwealth Games in 1950.


Remember... It's not true until it has been officially denied