Late Qing Dynasty-era sailing competition returns to Shanghai river

Updated 2017-07-17 09:27:13 Global Times

An international sailing competition last held during the late Qing Dynasty (1644-1911) will return to the banks of Shanghai this autumn after being virtually forgotten for over a century, news site reported Saturday.

The first Shanghai Cup was organized by British expatriates in 1873. The competition was held three times with the vast majority of competitors being foreigners. The event was won by British athletes every time.

The original cup designed for the competition is now housed in a museum in Cardiff, Wales, the report said.

Almost one and a half centuries later, the event was "unearthed" by the Shanghai Meifan Sailing Club, which have helped to bring the race back to life.

The race will be held this autumn in the Huangpu River which flows through the city.

According to the official website of Shanghai's Pudong district the Shanghai Cup 2017, as a points race for the Olympic Games, will be attended by the world's top 30 sailing athletes(grouped in 12 teams). Among them are Olympic medalists, champions of the World Cup series, the World championships and European championships.

The government statement explains that competitors will use Nacra 17 catamarans in the event, which are also used in Olympic competition.

Competitive sailing in China is still in its early stages, with the country's focus still on winning Olympic medals.

"Our modern sailing history dates back to the 1984 Olympic Games. We've got only 30 or so years while some countries have been sailing for 300 or 400 years," quoted Li Zhongyi, deputy director of the Chinese Yachting Association, as saying.

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