China / Society

New race series aims to promote cycling for pleasure

By Sun Xiaochen ( Updated: 2016-03-31 14:26

Inspired by a growing enthusiasm for fitness among Chinese people, Internet-based company Le Sports announced on Wednesday the launch of a road cycling series in nine major Chinese cities.

The opening leg of the series, which was sponsored by co-organizer and automobile brand Venucia, will be held in Beijing in May before visiting another eight cities including Shanghai, Guangzhou and Shenzhen over a period of around two months.

It will also have a charitable aspect, promoting various good causes such as welfare for migrant workers' children, environmental protection and female healthcare with themed billboards and crowd-engaging activities dotted along the routes.

The series is the first cycling race organized by Le Sports following its unveiling of an intelligent sports bike product line last August.

As the sporting arm of LeEco Holdings Ltd, the company has also purchased the media rights of three major international cycling races including the prestigious Tour de France, to be broadcast live on its website for Chinese fans.

Qiang Wei, chief marketing officer of Le Sports. said the aim was to build an ecosystem of product sales, media coverage and event access among China's increasing number of fitness zealots following the race's launch.

"We've had to come full circle from online to offline to promote cycling as a sporting event as well as marketing platform for our partners. We believe cycling for leisure, rather than just for transport, will be embraced by more and more Chinese," said Qiang.

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