Tabby Cat Went Viral After “Finishing First” in China Half Marathon

Tabby Cat Steals the Show at Fuling Half Marathon, Surpassing Runners to ‘Win’ Race

If there’s one fact about cats that may still surprise you, it’s this: a cat can beat runners in a half marathon race – or at least, one particular tabby cat can.

On 29 Oct, during an early autumn morning, the 2023 Fuling Baiheliang Half Marathon kicked off at Mianxiu Plaza in Fuling District, Chongqing.

Image: China News

Directed by the Chongqing Municipal Sports Bureau and hosted by the Fuling District People’s Government, the event included a half marathon spanning 21.0975 kilometres and a public health run of 3 kilometres.

The racecourse, which started from Mianxiu Plaza, wove its way through several cultural landmarks, including the Changfuhui·City Living Room, Baiheliang Underwater Museum, and the Fuling Yangtze River Bridge.

Nearly 5,000 runners, both local and international, participated in the event, running through the scenic course.

Being Fuling’s inaugural marathon event, the race received widespread acclaim for its meticulous organisation and thoughtful services.

The race featured 10 “cheering stations” with Fuling’s folk and cultural characteristics.

The organising committee prepared local specialties like Fuling pickled mustard tubers, hot oil tofu pudding, and fermented glutinous rice soup to energise the runners.

Image: China News

However, the race was particularly memorable, not just for its excellent organisation but also for its dramatic twist: a tabby cat unexpectedly clinched ‘first place’, overshadowing the actual champion, Wang Wanfu, who finished with a time of 1:08:36.

You: You’re joking.

Well, take a look at this:

Rumours have it that the cat can run faster than Soh Rui Yong in a 2.4km race.

Anyway, the video has gone viral ever since on Chinese and international media. Perhaps it’s no coincidence that cats and cheetahs share a common ancestry.

The little cat, diminutive compared to the runners, suddenly emerged from the barriers separating the lanes of the marathon route.

It sprinted along the lane, effortlessly outpacing Wang to the finish line.

And the cat sure knows how to flex.

The cat didn’t just sprint straight to the finish line.

It deftly weaved between the cones, demonstrating not only its agility but also its impressive sprinting ability.

Well, the cat was so close to winning 10,000 RMB for itself.

Image: China News

Although it didn’t walk away with the prize money, it gained itself a close-up shot of the livestream.

Image: Instagram (@minhau-pet)

While Wang appeared unfazed in the video, netizens went wild for the unexpected “champion” of the race.

This led to a lively debate, with some people questioning whether the cat was the true winner.

Opinions were split.

Some hailed the cat as a legitimate victor, while others, playing along with the joke, humorously accused the cat of “cheating”.

Image: Instagram (@minhau_pet) and Douyin (@第1眼新闻)

With regulations soon allowing up to two cats in HDB flats, perhaps it’s not such a bad idea to keep a couple of felines.

While dogs may bark at burglars, cats, it seems, can give chase – quite literally.