Chinese Olympic and World champion Sun Yang topped the world’s best all-around swimmer, Kosuke Hagino, and South Korean star Park Tae-hwan in the 400m freestyle, the biggest race of the Asian Games on Tuesday.
Sun, the 2013 Swimming World Male Swimmer of the Year, came from behind after 100 meters to win in 3:43.23 (race video here), which was .08 slower than the fastest time in the world this year (Park to win the Pan Pacific Championships).
It was plenty fast enough to beat the 20-year-old Hagino, though. The Japanese finished 1.25 seconds behind, winning his fifth medal of the meet. Hagino had beaten Sun and Park in the 200m free Sunday.
Sun is stronger as the distances are greater. He is the world record holder in the 1500m free.
Park, the 2008 Olympic 400m free champ, won bronze Tuesday but was more than five seconds behind Sun.
Hagino has two more individual races left. He is an overwhelming favorite in the 400m individual medley and also swims the 200m backstroke.
The most recognizable Chinese female swimmer, Ye Shiwen, won her 400m IM on Tuesday. Ye is best known for sweeping the IMs at the London Olympics, including a world record in the 400m IM, where she swam the final 50 meters faster than Ryan Lochte did to win the men’s event gold.
Ye’s time Tuesday was not eye-popping. She posted 4:32.97, more than two seconds slower than her best time this year and four seconds off her world record.