Taipei, Jan. 5 (CNA) President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) said Thursday that the government will actively train and help a new generation of athletes.
Tsai was speaking during a meeting with ultramarathon runner Tommy Chen (陳彥博), who won the 4 Deserts Race Series title in 2016.
She praised Chen for being the first Asian runner to win the title and called him "the pride of Taiwan."
She also expressed her appreciation to Chen's coach, Pan Jui-ken (潘瑞根), and conveyed her congratulations to Chen's parents, saying that having his family's understanding and support was what has enabled Chen to become such a persevering person.
The 4 Deserts Race Series include the Atacama Crossing in Chile, the Gobi March in China, the Sahara Race in Egypt (which was relocated to the Namib Desert in 2016) and the Last Desert race in Antarctica.
For each race, participants must cover 250 km in seven days over rough terrain, with only a place in a tent and water provided.
In 2016, Chen took second place in the Sahara Race in May, fifth in the Gobi March in June, first in the Atacama Crossing in October and second in the Last Desert race in November.
It was the first year in which all 4 Deserts races were held in the same calendar year.
(By Lu Hsin-hui and Y.F. Low)