Dubai, world s/c championships, day 5 finals:
Women's 50m freestyle
It was double Dutch in every way for the dash: Ranomi Kromowidjojo added the 50m crown to her 100m title in a championship record os 23.37, best ever in textile and only 0.12sec shy of the world mark set in a poly suit by fellow Dutch sprinter Marleen Veldhuis (now on the comeback trail aftyer becoming a mum), while the silver went to their teammate Hinkelien Schreuder in 23.81. The bronze marked an historic bronze for the Bahamas, courtesy of Arianna Vanderpool-Wallace's 24.04. The champion had warned of late with a 23.58sec best.
Kromowidjojo turns well but she is not winning races that way. She is swimming faster, whoch bodes well for Shanghai 2011 world long-course championships, by which time the champion of today, coached by Jacco Verhaeren, will be a contender for the crown no matter who shows up in form. She was as quick through the mixed zone as she was in the water but Schreuder was there to tell reporters: "It was fast and I was fast enough to get second. I'm very happy with that, it's a season best. It's very competitive in the Netherlands as you can see and you have to be on top of your game. You gain a little from every passing race."
History in the making:
World s/c Podiums
Most world titles in this event: 2
Records (TB = best ever in a textile suit)
Most world records in this event (since specific 25m records began in 1991): 2
All-time textile rankings top 5:
From the archive:
The winner of the first two crowns in 1993 and 1995, Le Jingyi, set a world record of 24.23 in 1993 that coming into Dubai 2010 remained the Asian record, surviving even an assault of shiny suits that were sunk by a ban on non-textile apparel January 1, 2010. Enter 15-year-old Li Zhesi, who arrived in the UAE entered with a best of 24.67. In heats she clocked 24.15 to wipe out her own best and Le Jingyi's 17-year-old mark, then in semis reduced the standard to 24.09 to take lane 5 for the final today. Le, meanwhile, was coached by Zhao Ming, at the helm of coaching in China when 44 swimmers tested positive for doping in the 1990s. He received a life ban in 1998 but that was said by China to have been reduced to an 8-year-ban. Photographs emerged from the 2005 Chinese national championships confirming that Zhao Ming was still on the deck working with young swimmers.