Cycling Race Inspires Enthusiasm

CNC report from China
Added On July 14, 2013

Once known as "Atomic Town" in China, Xihai has been transformed into a heaven for cyclists from home and abroad.
  
Sitting along the Qinghai Lake in northwest China, the town has witnessed cyclists swarming to attend the Tour of Qinghai Lake, an international road cycling race since 2002.

Inspiring by the ongoing race of this year, a number of Chinese amateur riders also got on their bikes.

Let's take a look.

During the 12th Tour of Qinghai Lake, Tian Yuanfu and Liu Guilan, a couple near their 50 from eastern Jiangxi Province, arrived at Xihai Township to start a four-day cycling trip around the lake.
  
Not like other younger riders, the couple seemed more relaxed and enjoyed.

Tian told CNC that they quite enjoy smelling the flowers, looking at the vast Lake, and nothing can ever be more leisurable than this.

SOUNDBITE (CHINESE) TIAN YUANFU, Amateur of Cycling:
"For us, cycling is not only a sport but also a kind of hobby. We often ride short journeys at the weekends and long distance if we have a week long holiday. We set up a tent to take a rest when we get tired."

Tian said in his hometown, cycling has become a fashionable and cool sport in recent years.

And most of them were inspired by the races that were held all over the country in the past 10 years.

Last year the couple cycled all the way from Chengdu, the capital of west China's Sichuan Province, to Lhasa, the holy city on Qinghai-Tibet Plateau, within 22 days.

SOUNDBITE (CHINESE) LIU GUILAN, Tian's wife:
"Thanks to the experiences in the last journey in plateau, cycling around the Qinghai Lake is much easier."

SOUNDBITE (CHINESE) TIAN YUANFU, Amateur of Cycling:
"We take care of each other during the trip, sleeping in a tent and cooking by ourselves. And sometimes, I even had some wine. This kind of life makes me happy."

Since the first Tour of Qinghai Lake held in 2002, about 300,000 riders from home and abroad have come to the lake.

Travelling with their bicycles, they've got new perspectives to taste the plateau.

SOUNDBITE (CHINESE) ZHOU MINGYANG, Amateur of Cycling
"We know summer is the best season to visit Qinghai lake. And we are very lucky to meet the Tour of Qinghai Lake. Riding around the lake is so tired, but the view is so beautiful. I feel proud every time when I conquer the high peaks like them. This trip is a pilgrimage to me."

SOUNDBITE (CHINESE) ZHANG JIANSHE, Amateur of Cycling:
"Without the race I will never know Qinghai Lake is such a paradise for riders! Of course, it's tired. But I feel so good. It's such a beautiful journey."

As Tour of Qinghai Lake developed, a series of cycling races such as Tour of Hainan Island, Tour of Taihu Lake are booming all over the country.

Bicycles, the country's former main transportation, now have become popular sport equipment.