Saturday, August 3, 2013

China's first vertical marathon takes place in the China World Summit Wing of the Beijing Shangri-la

Fastest male runner reached the top of the hotel in less than 10 minutes 

The highest hotel in Beijing, Shangri-La’s China World Summit Wing, Beijing, hosted the first-ever vertical run in China accredited by the International Skyrunning Federation (ISF) yesterday.

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The run up the 330-meter tower was attempted by 600 runners from different countries, including 12 elite athletes vying to be crowned 2013 Vertical World Circuit (VWC) champions.

The run included climbing 82 floors -- the equivalent of 2,041 steps, making it one of the most challenging races on the VWC this year.


The world’s first and only skyscraper racing circuit, VWC is uniting some of the world’s most iconic skyscraper races.

There have been vertical runs at some of the world's most famous buildings, including the following:

1) Empire State Building in New York
2) Taipei 101 Tower in Taiwan


The reigning Vertical World Circuit Champion, Thomas Dold of Germany, won the inaugural China World Summit Wing Hotel Vertical Run yesterday, setting the overall fastest time up Beijing’s tallest building.

The win is Dold’s first outright victory on this year’s Vertical World Circuit, earning him 100 points on the men’s ranking.

The 28-year old German finished the run up the China World Summit Wing in 9 minutes and 55 seconds, taking home the winning prize of US$1,000.

He said: “This is my first time in China, so I am very happy to have come here and to have won this great challenge. The highlight is the fantastic view over Beijing when reaching the finish line. It makes the whole effort worthwhile. I’m definitely looking forward to coming back for next year’s race.”


The rooftop of the China World Summit Wing Hotel, where the race finished, offered unparalleled bird’s eye views across the whole of Beijing, with sights such as the Forbidden City providing a unique backdrop.

Australia runner Suzy Walsham climbed finished the climb in 11 minutes 47 seconds.

She said: “This race was not easy as the course changes all the time. I had to dig deep today to win and last ten floors were especially difficult. To be crowned the first China World Summit Wing Hotel Vertical Run champion is a great honour.”

China World Summit Wing General Manager Thomas Schmitt-Glaeser also joined the marathon.

He said: "We are extremely proud to see this first event become such a resounding success. We are happy to support community events at our hotel, especially ones that help raise funds for charity and promote healthy and active lifestyle. I ran myself and I look forward to doing this again."


The marathon raced funds for the official charity of the event, which is China Rural Kids Health Care (CRKC). The aim of CRKC is to provide free medical insurance for children from poor families in rural China, creating an opportunity for these children to get subsidized medical and health care. 

Registration fees for the China World Summit Wing Hotel Vertical Run was Rmb 80, of which Rmb 75 will be used for one year’s insurance for one child.

Basically, each of the 600 competing runners sponsored the health insurance of a child for one year.


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