The new episode of PD Studio features Alex Hua Tian, China's star Olympic rider. Alex won a silver medal for China at the 2014 Asian Games. He is China's first equestrian Olympian in history.
Alex came under the spotlight with an unexpected fall during the Beijing Olympic Games, but he overcame the setback and ended up eighth in the Rio Olympics in 2016. Looking back at the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games, Alex said it was a fairytale, but he was disappointed. Despite his unexpected fall at fence 8, which he referred to as a devastating moment, Alex is grateful for the failure in 2008. "Without that moment, I wouldn't even be here," he said.
As a half-Chinese, Alex sees himself as "half-half", comfortable in both cultures. "China is the new world of opportunities. Being half Chinese, half British, I think I'm in the best position to judge that," Alex said.
"The West is not as exciting as China is. China gives so much more opportunities to our generation," he added.
To keep a young heart in a relatively long career as an equestrian, Alex developed a multi-faceted relationship with horses. "Many people think I have a boring life. But I'm very lucky that my work is engaging, fun and filled with wonderful creatures," he said.
Alex started the Horsemanship Movement in Shanghai which gives children experience with horses to teach them partnership, stable management and the values of horsemanship. Last year, 200 migrant children went through the pilot program. He said by starting the movement, he wanted to break the stereotypical image that this was an elite sport that only wealthier families could afford. Horsemanship, in his eyes, was about teaching children values essential to growing up.
Now watch the video for more of the interview.
(Produced by Liang Peiyu, Zhao Dantong, Yan Yiqiao, Qiao Wai, Han Xiaomeng, Wang Xiangyu and Wu Kai; story written by Han Xiaomeng)