Chongqing, China, 14th September, 2014
Western China’s highest tower race was launched on Saturday - The Westin Chongqing Vertical Run where 300 local and overseas participants took to the stairs to dash up the 1,352 steps to the tower’s helipad.
Germany’s Thomas Dold and China’s Gan Xue stole the show. Dold crossed the finish line in a time of 7 minutes and 12 seconds. Second place in the men's event went to Piotr Lobodzinski from Poland, who said he could not keep up with Dold towards the last half of the climb. He came in at 7 minutes and 32 seconds. Third place went to Omar Bekkali of Belgium in a time of 7 minutes 58 seconds.
"This is a great day for me. It was a fantastic day and very well organised. I will definitely come back next year to defend my title," said Dold.
In the women's race, Gan Xue finished comfortably at a time of 9 minutes and 17 seconds. She was closely followed by her compatriots Zheng Wenrong and Zhang Huiji, who came in at 9 minutes and 25 seconds and 9 minutes and 46 respectively.
Gan looked strong and determined as she started to open the gap after the 10 floor mark. The 22 year old did not look back as she claimed the grand prize.
"This is the very significant event," Eric Ang, Director of Sales and Marketing at The Westin Chongqing Liberation Square, said ahead of the race.
"Bringing an international event here is a huge step forward, not only for the city of Chongqing, but for China as a whole.”
Race organizer and VWC representative, David Shin of Sporting Republic said: "We are extremely proud to bring an international vertical run to Chongqing. This is a great opportunity to promote Chongqing as an international destination for sports,” he said. “It is exciting to be part of a race that focuses on the runner’s experience, especially those that come in from overseas.”
Organised by Sporting Republic and the International Skyrunning Federation, the event was selected as Exhibition Race for the 2014 Vertical World Circuit (VWC)uniting some of the world’s most iconic skyscraper races, including the Empire State Building Run-Up in New York City.
After last week’s enormously successful race on Beijing’s tallest tower, China World Summit Wing Hotel Vertical Run with 1,000 participants, the next stage of the VWC moves west to São Paolo, Brazil on October 18, then back to Asia for Shanghai on October 26 and the grand finale on December 7 in Hong Kong where the VWC Champions will be crowned.
1. Thomas Dold, Germany, 7 minutes 12 seconds
2. Piotr Lobodzinski, Poland, 7 minutes 32 seconds
3. Omar Bekkali, Belgium, 7 minutes 58 seconds
1. Gan Xue, China, 9 minutes 17 seconds
2. Zheng Wenrong, 9 minutes 25 seconds
3. Zhang Huiji, 9 minutes 46 seconds
Event details: www.verticalrunning.org
Event Website: www.cqwestinrun.com
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