Planned Workouts and scheduled races

Every Wednesday: Bigfoot Cycle Workout (Dali) 5:15 am
Every Saturday: Bigfoot Swim Workout (Dali) 6:00 am

8/28 Vision Bigfoot Duathlon (Qingshui) 8:00 am
9/4 Taiwan P.E. University Cup 5000m 4:00 pm
10/1 Beauty of Taidong Triathlon (Olympic Distance) 8:00 am
10/30 Gaomei Wetland Marathon (Qingshui) - (Marathon distance) 6:00 am
11/5 NeverStop West Coast Bike Race (200km) 5:00 am *
11/13 Taoyuan National Marathon (Marathon distance) - TBA 11/20 Mizono Marathon Relay
12/18 Fubon Taipei Marathon (Marathon distance) 7:00 am (Boston Marathon qualifying attempt)

* reconsidering the NeverStop race due to the date change to November, which would result in four race weekends (perhaps five if the Supau Cup is on 11/27) in a row.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Taichung's East Asian Games' hurdle

Taichung Intercontinental Stadium - 2007 Asian Baseball Championships

Taichung is a Candidate City to host the 2017 East Asian Games . I am sure that I speak for many sports enthusiasts who would absolutely love to see East Asia's largest quadriennal sporting event to be hosted in our wonderful city.

However, there are three major obstacles to Taichung being selected as the host city. The first is that while we have numerous sporting facilities in the city, many of them are aging and will require significant renovation to upgrade them to facilities worthy of hosting an international event.

The second obstacle is transportation. Taichung has a horrible transportation system. We have no rapid mass transit system (nor will the line supposedly under construction be ready by then) and traffic can turn many roads into long parking lots several times a week.

The above two obstables are surmountable. The third may not be. That obstacle is China. There are eight voting members who participate in the Games (Guam also participates, but as it is not a member of the Olympic Council of Asia, it does not get a vote.) Four of those votes are throught to be controlled by China. China, Hong Kong, and Macau each have a vote. It is also widely believed that the DPRK vote is also controlled by China. So, China is the king maker. And thier recent record regarding international sporting events and Taiwan is not encouraging.

In 2006, Taiwan hosted the IBAF Intercontinental Cup. Despite qualifying as the bronze medal winner of the 2005 Asian Baseball Championships, China was a no-show. The same is true in 2010. China qualified, but was a no-show. China was a no-show for the 2007 Asian Baseball Championship despite winning the bronze in 2005 (played in Japan). They played in 2009, again in Japan, finishing fourth.

Taiwan hosted two important international sporting events in 2009. China sent delegations to the World Games in Kaohsiung and the Deaflympics in Taipei, but in neither case did China send a full-strength delegation.

Our mayor, Jason Hu, is currently on the tail end of a trip to China and Japan in which he hopes to lobby with Chinese sports officials to support Taichung's bid. Japan will likely be far more sympathetic to a Taiwanese bid given the goodwill that exists between the people of the two countries, but China will be a much tougher sell.

It is a reality of the region that China has so much undue influence. The 2005 and 2009 Games were in China's SARs and the 2013 Games will be in Tianjin. The other two candidate cities are Jeju in Korea and Ulan Bator in Mongolia. It would be great for Taichung to get the games, but given the undue weight China has in choosing the host, don't hold your breath for the region's best athletes to be making a visit to our wonderful city in 2017.

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