Camel races open in north China

Updated 2018-01-10 10:31:09 Xinhua

A herdsman leads camels to take part in a camel beauty contest in Sunite Right Banner, north China's Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region, Jan. 9, 2018. A camel fair, a local traditional festival including camel race and camel beauty contest, was held in the Banner on Tuesday. More than 200 camels took part in the fair. (Xinhua/Lian Zhen)

More than 200 camels with jockeys on their backs competed in a series of races on Tuesday on snow-covered grasslands in Sonid Right Banner, Xilingol League, north China's Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region.

"Camel racing on the snowfield needs courage and perseverance," said Dabuxilatu, a local ethnic Mongolian herdsman who won the 15km race. "It is a competition for the brave and also a fun sport."

Participants were from Inner Mongolia's Ordos City, Hulunbuir City and Xilingol League. They gathered for a camel festival including a 15km race for adult camels, an 8km race for two-year-old camels, camel polo as well as horse racing, Mongolian wrestling and archery competitions.

When the races began, jockeys urged their camels forward with whips, to the cheers and screams of the crowd.

"The competitions were astonishing," said local resident Mengkebayar. "I came to watch every year."

This year's races, the 12th of its kind, attracted hundreds of visitors from many other provinces or regions.

Han Li, a tourist from south China's Shenzhen, could not stop taking photos. She shared her photos with friends on China's popular social media app WeChat.

"It's amazing! All the things around are surprising as I've never seen real camels and snow-covered grasslands before," Han said.

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