The Winter Olympics hotspot of Shougang Industrial Park in western Beijing aims to cultivate a new sports image and introduce more sports-related branding.
Shougang orienteering cross-country landed in the iron and steel industrial plant-turned 2022 Winter Olympics organizing headquarters on Sunday with more than 500 runners aged five to 60 exploring the century-old industrial park.
Orienteering is a competitive or noncompetitive recreational activity in which participants use a map and compass to navigate between checkpoints along an unfamiliar course. Sunday's race course was laden with 20 checkpoints around the lake as well as overpasses where runners could appreciate the Shougang Big Air ramp, which will be used for freestyle skiing and snowboarding events in 2022, and former industrial sites that are used for recreation.
The industrial park, aimed at combining old industrial heritage with new development concepts, is a municipality-level strategy that goes beyond the Winter Olympics. With the China Basketball Association's Beijing Ducks as a major professional sports team, Shougang Sports, the organizing and operating group named after the former iron and steel plant, plans to introduce more sports branding for grassroots participants in the industrial park.
According to Liang Zongping, board chairman of Shougang Sports, orienteering will be listed among the major team brands after basketball, ice hockey, baseball and table tennis. Sunday's race kicks off city orienteering or even intercity races to promote local tourism.
The race was endorsed by Wey, a Chinese luxury SUV brand under Great Wall Motors (GWM), China's largest SUV and pickup manufacturer.
Gu Huajun, executive director of the brand and customers' operating center of Wey, said the brand will make forays into auto-related areas like modified vehicles, haulage motors and other trendy products to develop users' experience.