Thu, October 21, 2010
Sports > Popular News > 2010 Asian Games torch relay

More ordinary people join torch relay

2010-10-21 06:33:48 GMT2010-10-21 14:33:48 (Beijing Time)  SINA.com

The flame of the 16th Asian Games continued its tour on Wednesday as 80 torchbearers participated in the relay in Shanwei, one of the event's co-host cities.

Unlike previous relays, which featured big names and celebrities, the 8.4-kilometre relay in this coastal city involved mostly ordinary people from all walks of life.

It started in Matsu Cultural Square, one of the coastal scenic spots in Shanwei, where thousands of local residents gathered and waved flags with signs of the torch and Asian Games.

Guo Jing, 70, a native of Shanwei, said bearing the torch inspired him to contribute more to his hometown.

"I take the honour of bearing the torch as a sort of social recognition and responsibility. I hope it will help boost development of my business. In return, I will make more contributions to charity," he said.

He also said the relay allowed more ordinary people like him to participate in the sports gala.

Guo, who owns a private rice trade company in Shenzhen, has donated 10 million yuan ($1.5 million) to develop new schools in his hometown.

Wu Wutang, a sailing athlete who was the first torchbearer on Wednesday, said participation in the relay inspired him to work harder in his preparation for the upcoming Games.

"I will show my best in the sailing event. I will try to win a medal in my hometown," Wu said.

Shanwei will host the sailing competition during the Games, which begin on Nov 12.

Local authorities have invested nearly 100 million yuan to renovate a sea sports centre and its accommodations. The venue, which used to be a training centre for sea sports, occupies 200,000 square metres.

The Asian Games flame has passed through six cities in Guangdong Province. It will stop in 14 more cities before wrapping up its journey in Guangzhou, the provincial capital.

(Source: GAGOC)

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