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Online celebrity helps boost horse industry in home county

Xinhua, January 14, 2022 Adjust font size:

China Horse Industry Association (CHIA) has signed a strategic cooperation agreement with Litang County in southwest China's Sichuan Province, to support local horse racing and leisure tourism industry as an Internet celebrity has thrust the county into limelight.

On Tuesday, the association offered donations in the form of six horses, 2,000 horse dewormers, and professional services such as horse registration and promotion activities to the county, with a total value of more than 3.14 million yuan (about 494,000 U.S. dollars).

Horse racing, an iconic entertainment activity in Litang, the Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture of Garze, has drawn much traction nationwide since a 7-second video featuring a smiling young herder from the county went viral in 2020.

Tamdrin, the 22-year-old boy seen in the video, became a social media sensation in China and is now the tourism ambassador of his home county of Litang.

His Mandarin name Ding Zhen and related topics continued to trend on major social media platforms. A Weibo handle, the Chinese equivalent of Twitter, in the name of his horse Pearl had gained some 90,000 followers at that time.

Located 4,000 meters above sea level, Litang is dubbed "the city in the sky." Thanks to the limelight, the county has been able to boost its under-developed tourism industry.