Su Bingtian and World Indoor Championships mascot Cedar lead a New Year 5km run in Nanjing (© LOC)
Chinese sprint star Su Bingtian led more than 4000 runners at the 38th edition of the annual New Year Run in Nanjing, the host city of the next World Athletics Indoor Championships.
Bingtian, the Asian record holder in the 60m indoors and Asian co-record holder in the 100m, along with Cedar, the mascot of the World Athletics Indoor Championships Nanjing 2020, led more than 70 groups of runners through the eastern Chinese city's Youth Olympics Sports Park.
Since its debut in 1982, the annual race has witnessed significant transformations of the city and recorded wonderful memories for Nanjing’s citizens.
The event took on added significance this year as the city prepares to host the World Athletics Indoor Championships from 13-15 March at Nanjing’s Cube Indoor Athletics Facility.
Themed "Run for Health, Run for Well-being", the 5km run attracted participants from all walks of life, including officials of municipal authorities and citizens from Jiangbei New Area and the Pukou, Xuanwu, Qinhuai, Jianye, and Gulou Districts.
The course began at Nanjing's Cube, ran past various landmarks such as the Nanjing Sports Training Centre, the venue for the National Snowboarding Training Team, the Yangtze River Boat Complex which will serve as the official hotel for the World Athletics Indoor Championships and the Yangtze River Financial Demonstration Zone before arriving at Wentao Square, the finish point. Runners ran past banners promoting and celebrating the upcoming World Indoor Championships that dotted the route.
Wang Nan, World Athletics Council Member and Vice President of the Chinese Athletics Association, flagged off the race.
Other officials attending the launch ceremony included Yang Xuepeng, Member of the Nanjing Municipal Standing Committee and Executive Vice Mayor; Chen Hua, Deputy Director of the Nanjing Municipal People's Congress; Li Qi, Vice President of the CPPCC Nanjing Municipal Committee; Xiong Wei, Deputy Director of Jiangsu Provincial Administration of Sports; Wu Xiuliang, Deputy Secretary-General of Nanjing Municipal Government; Yang Feng, Deputy Director of the Competition Department of the Chinese Athletics Association; Chen Weihong, Director of Nanjing Municipal Bureau of Sports; and Li Baoping, Deputy Director of the Management Committee of Jiangbei New Area.
Nanjing 2020 LOC for World Athletics