Park Tae-hwan failed to advance to the final of the 200-m freestyle at the 2009 World Championship at Stadio Olimpico del Nuoto in Rome after a disappointing outcome over the weekend. On Sunday, Park also failed to make to the final of the 400-m freestyle.
In the semifinal round of the 200-m freestyle, Park finished 5th in his group and 13th overall with a time of 1:46.68. Four-hundred-meter freestyle winner Paul Biedermann came in first overall, while Michael Phelps was third overall.
Many were saying Park's decision to go with an old suit was a mistake. The controversial new suits approved by FINA are made of polyurethane to aid buoyancy and are said to be partially responsible for several new world records. Many who finished in front of Park went with the newer suits while Park stuck with the old legskins by Speedo.