Curtain ready to rise on a sporting spectacular

By DU JUAN | China Daily | Updated: 2022-01-05 07:22
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Athletes compete in a qualification round for curling at the Winter Olympics. WEI XIAOHAO/CHINA DAILY

What to expect

Shen Xue, a former Olympic champion figure skater, said during the 40-day countdown event that since China won the bid to host the Winter Olympics in Beijing and Zhangjiakou, Hebei province, ice and snow sports have developed rapidly in the nation.

"All the ice venues will become precious Olympic legacies for Beijing and China, helping the country become a strong force in winter sports," she said.

Zhang Weili, an enthusiastic skier from Fengtai district in Beijing, said he has witnessed the fast development of the ice sports industry in recent years.

"More people have started to take up ice events, as enthusiasm for winter sports grows in the city. I'm so happy to see increasing numbers having fun as they enjoy these seasonal activities," he said.

Zhang, who has been skiing for more than 10 years, said he often visits Big Air Shougang, where many ice-themed activities take place.

"I hope all the athletes will achieve their dreams at the upcoming Games," he said.

In the past seven years, Beijing and Hebei have stepped up integrated development during their preparations for the Winter Olympics. Infrastructure in Zhangjiakou has been significantly upgraded, including transportation services, water, power and natural gas.

The two cities have also been successful in jointly tackling air pollution.

As Zhangjiakou now boasts three additional resorts, skiing enthusiasts routinely use high-speed rail services to reach these facilities.

Liu Shanshan, 36, who loves to ski, said the forthcoming Games have brought the two cities, people and winter sports closer.

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