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Torch Kindled for City Celebration of Olympic Sailing
    2008-08-09 22:17:59     Xinhua
Torch for the city celebration of the Olympic sailing was kindled in Qingdao Saturday night at the launching ceremony of the Olympic sailing regatta.

Standing on a windsurfer "flying" in the sky, Li Lishan, the gold medalist of the women's windsurfer of the 1996 Atlanta, sailed all the way to kindle the torch, after the Olympic flame from Beijing was brought into the Olympic Sailing venue earlier the day.

"We welcome athletes from all over the world and wish them great achievements in the competition," said Xia Gen, mayor of Qingdao and president of the Sailing Committee (Qingdao) of BOCOG, during the welcome speech.

Representatives from 62 sailing teams marched on the stage and displayed their flags at the Olympic Sailing Center Themed Park, where the launching ceremony was held.

The launching ceremony was celebrated with cheerful performance and splendid fireworks.

Fifteen boats from Yngling class and 26 boats from Finn class finished two races on the opening day of the sailing regatta on Saturday afternoon.

A total of 400 athletes with 272 boats from 62 countries and regions compete in 11 events of nine classes of the sailing regatta from Aug. 9 to 23.
 
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