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China secure victory at Asian Mountain Bike C’ship, qualify for Paris Olympics

In a thrilling display of athleticism and determination, China emerged victorious in the cross-country relay race to clinch the first gold at the 28th Senior & 14th Junior Asian Mountain Bike Championship currently underway in the scenic hill station at Ponmudi near here.

This championship, which is being held inside a tea estate, serves as a qualifying event for the 2024 Paris Olympics.

The Chinese contingent comprising elite riders Liu Xiangjing, Ma Ka’che and Chen Keyu, along with Bada’an Shiqu from the junior category and Wang Xili from the U-23 category, delivered a spectacular performance to secure the gold.

Their victory was hard-fought, with Japan taking an early lead and displaying dominance in the first two laps of the relay. However, China’s cyclists exhibited resilience and exceptional teamwork to ultimately seize the gold by a narrow margin in the final lap. Japan claimed the silver, while Kazakhstan secured the bronze.

Nine nations participated in this event with India finishing seventh.

The events listed for Friday include the women’s elite division downhill final followed by the men’s elite downhill final. Winners in these categories will earn ticket to the 2024 Paris Olympics.

On Saturday, the cyclists will battle it out in the U-23 and junior categories in both men’s and women’s cross-country events.

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