Can Paltrinieri & Horton Gatecrash The Sun Vs Cochrane Party Over 30 Boiling Laps?

Power Players Vs Pretenders: Gregorio Paltrinieri is prepared for a fast race with Mack Horton, left, Sun Yang, top right, tackling to Grant Hackett and Aussie teammate Dan Smith, and Ryan Cochrane, bottom right - images by Patrick B. Kraemer (Horton, Swimming Australia)

Sun Yang and Ryan Cochrane have had a 1-2 finish going on in the 1500m for the past several seasons. Young fighters are heading their way: what impact can Gregorio Paltrinieri and Mack Horton have come the curtain-closing days and a mouth-watering 1500m at world titles in Kazan?

Want to read more? Our Basic subscription package allows you to access
to all articles barring specific content for Premium and Business
members. Select which service best suits you. Thank you for your
support of independent journalism and quality coverage of world-class swimming.

Log In Register

Sun Yang and Ryan Cochrane have had a 1-2 finish going on in the 1500m for the past several seasons. Young fighters are heading their way: what impact can Gregorio Paltrinieri and Mack Horton have come the curtain-closing days and a mouth-watering 1500m at world titles in Kazan?



Both the 400m and the 1500m should be great races. I’m hoping for personal bests for Mr. Cochrane, Mr. Horton, and Mr. Paltrineri, as well as Mr. Yang. And hopefully all of them are very much pressed from behind by Mr. Jaeger and the rest of the swimmers in the final.

There is one thing about Mack Horton that has me somewhat worried. In both the 400m and the 1500m races at the Australian trials he did not make dolphin kicks at the turns. I’m worried that he’ll have to work much harder than the others to keep up for the distance lost at every turn.

I expect these distance will be the high point of the Kazan Championships.

Craig Lord

In the near future, Roy, I think it will be hard to get to. The back end speed was wild. I’m sure coach DC’s guidance and knowledge will have helped… the place of Sun’s genuine full potential we may never recognise, given the events of 2014.

Chloe Jones

Craig, why do you think Sun chatting with Hackett means he good at reading the code? Do these two have necessary relations? You know, there are big differences between everyday English and Medical English, especially for non-native speakers. The fact, that Sun can communicate with others in English well, just means his everyday English has improved, not anything else.

o surename?

Thorpedo 3:40:08 not :07 (or :06 unfortunately). Please respect and worship the monument 🙂

Craig Lord

Chloe… I speak a few languages – including knowing the rules of my game, the media law of my country and international standards, too. I’m not an expert but as and when the need arises, I do my very best to make sure I know what I need to know – and have access to world-class expertise if and when I need it. Athletes, coaches and teams take such care every day all over the world when it comes to anti-doping. Sun Yang is a well-travelled, well-experienced, world-class, elite, professional athlete. He is no different in anti-doping rules to the very many thousands (to put it modestly) of non-English speaking peers across the world – all MUST observe the rules. Sun has Australian coaches and mentors – all of whom would have been perfectly capable of nodding to the 2014 changes to the WADA Code as advertised in 2013. Those coaches and mentors should have been privy to their charge’s medical condition and medication given that they were setting him hefty workloads. Language is no excuse nor does it wash when explaining the events of 2014. The lack of transparency, starting with that between swimmer/doctor and coaches in China and mentors in Australia has been unacceptable.

Craig Lord

The monument is restored, o, surename, or whateveryoursurenameis 🙂

o surename?

Well I put surename? as it appeared as such in the registration process :-). Thanks for the site anyway, and never forget to mention Tim Shaw when wrting about the 200 to 1500 challenge …

Craig Lord

sure thing, whateveryoursurename is … 🙂


I would love to see an European swimmer to lift the world crown in 1500free. It must have been ages since this happend last time.

Another reason for me to be super excited about 1500free is that my countryman will have a real shot at breaking the magic 15mins barrier.

@ Craig,
please how big is the sub 15 club now without the “plastic fantastic” members?

Craig Lord

54 men have swum that way, TommyL … Ayatsugu Hirai most recent ticket, at the Universiade – all since Salnikov 1980. Since Montgomery 1976, sub 50sec 100 club has grown to 10 times the 1500 figure 🙂


Thanks Craig. Please are you able to check your magic records to see whether there is a similar club with around 50 members?

100breast under 1:00?
100free under 49?
100back under 53?
100fly under 52?

I would like to know what is the sub 15 club comparable to.

Many thanks.

Craig Lord

Few egs, TommyL:
top 50 100 free club takes a 48.4
top 50 400IM takes 4:14.80
top 50 100br takes 1:00.3 (32 under minute)
top 50 100 fly takes 51.9
top 50 100bk takes 53.8
41 under 2:10 in 200br… textile only
(readers please note: I haven’t got time to look up every request 🙂

Craig Lord

You may be right, Roy, and no-one is suggesting that a mistake by Chinada may not have contributed to the farce that followed… but that falls well shy of the main points about transparency and getting it right in the first place and then getting it right all the way through a reporting process set out in the WADA Code. It is like no-one involved ever read the Code and the processes that must be observed, by all: unacceptable and doubly so in a nation that has more reasons than most to have done its homework and taken every precaution possible.


Some athletes do push back. Li Na is well known for getting very favorable terms in her dealings with the Chinese tennis federation because they felt like they needed her on the court instead of in retirement like she had planned. In figure skating, Pang Qing and Tong Jian were also reportedly given huge incentives to defer retirement until after the World Championships were held on home soil in Shanghai this year.

So it is possible to play that game in some sports, but Chinese swimming isn’t quite willing to go there with Sun.


Roy, Chloe and others, please don’t portrait Sun Young as illiterate slumdog who is eating whatever he’s found. You will never put in your mouth something that you don’t know what it is. I am more than positive that elite athlete who is constantly under radar, pays a lot of attention to what he is eating. And I have no doubts that the questions about those drugs was asked. Did he run his own research? Maybe not. He has enough means to have someone else to do this job for him. So either he was told that it’s OK and didn’t care more after that or he was told that without this drug he will be out of sport for the health reason and he decided to go with it no matter what or he consciously played on the edge of what is permissible to help himself in the pool. We don’t know that and I don’t want another idol to fall under pressure of unproven accusations. But – and that is Craig’s major point – the lack of transparency together with the fact of knowingly breaking WADA’s rule give everybody around rights to suspect Sun Young in cheating. He had more than 18 months to settle the case and to make international swimming community satisfied. It wasn’t done. So that’s why we have now completely opposite views on Sun Young’s legacy. The situation will not get resolved until he himself or someone who was closely involved shed some light on this matter. I have some feeling that it will never happen.


Yes, Roy. I know this story and there fore I still hope that there will be some explanation from Sun Young’s team that will be accepted by swimming community and the discussion like this will never reappear again.


The fact that China authorities never thought about telling WADA and FINA until the story was disclosed through a news and the fact that CHINADA gave Sun Yang retroactive lenient almost like nothing ban to be able to send him to Incheon along with the still banned Dr. Ba Zhen confirmed that China authorities (officials, coaches, etc) have complete disregard of international sports rule of engagement.

Even if we treat Sun Yang as an innocent, It is fair to question the motive of China’s coaches and officials to prescribe Sun Yang with the drug that has been proven to have been used by distance athletes like cross country skiers and cyclists.

Throughout the years, it can be shown that China repeatedly treat rules of engagement with complete lack of regard. Even after seven of their swimmers got busted in 1994 Hiroshima (bravo to Japanese officials! and boo to Italian officials in 1994 Rome!), astoundingly, they STILL even smuggled a bag full of HGH that they asked Yuan Yuan to bring through Perth airport.
This situation showed that the chinese swimmers were not as innocent as we can claim them to be, even if they were powerless against their authorities.

Sun Yang case is not just about lack of transparency, it shows that China could not care less if they play fair or dirty as long as they win.

jim lockier

Little coverage has been given to the fact that Sun’s Aussie coach, Brian King, has been banned from coaching for six months (all swimmers, not just children), and a further three years coaching U16s. That ban came into effect on 1 July. That means, he should not be coaching Sun, and should not be on pool deck at Kazan. SAL informed the Chinese and FINA of the ban. They have both ignored SAL’s. He has been interviewed several times on TV in the lead-up, commenting on Sun’s form. Sun even refers to King as his “mentor”. What a joke. It is disgraceful. Brian King continues to salute SAL with his middle finger. A drug cheat and a banned coach. What a perfect match!

Craig Lord

I agree Jim – there can be no question that a coach serving a ban imposed by a member federation of FINA should NOT be on the deck in Kazan.


Lack of transparency excuse is only a minor part of China’s problem.

As I said, Sun Yang’s case is about the Chinese KNOWINGLY breaking rules of engagement again and again and again…

Leave a comment

Post a comment with your SwimVortex Account. Don't have a SwimVortex Account, Sign Up?

(*) Fields are required!