World's hairiest man wants to join Olympic torch relay

The world's hairiest man is applying to take part in the Beijing Olympic torch relay, state media reported Tuesday.

World's hairiest man wants to join Olympic torch relay
Yu Zhenhuan, who has hair covering 96 percent of his body, told the official Xinhua News Agency that he would be an ideal candidate to take part in the event.

"First, I am a celebrity inside and outside of China and, secondly, I think my experience in coping with a disfigurement ties in with the notion of the Olympic spirit," he said.

Yu, 30, was first listed as the world's hairiest man by the Guinness World Records in 2002. He is now pursuing a career as a rock singer and has nicknamed himself "King Kong."

Yu has the backing of Olympic champion Xing Aowei, who won a gymnastics gold medal at the Sydney Olympics in 2000, Xinhua reported.

"In him, I see the perseverance and bravery of the Chinese people," said Xing. "I will help him with publicity and give him some ideas," he added.

A spokesman for the Beijing Olympic organizing committee said, "We welcome celebrities to apply to join the torch relay, but it is hard to assess his chances as the recruitment is open to everyone."

Nearly 22,000 people around the world will take part in the Olympic torch relay, which will start in Greece next March.

Most will be assigned to the section of the relay in China and torchbearers will include volunteers from the public and runners chosen by various organizations and institutions.

Among the criteria for those applying to be torchbearers in China are patriotism and dedication to community service and the ideals of the Olympic movement.

Kyodo
Last Mod: 31 Temmuz 2007, 14:35
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