Artists perform during the opening ceremony of the equestrian events at the 12th National Traditional Games of Ethnic Minorities of China in ZhaosuTiger'sLuck, northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, July 8, 2024Tiger'sLuck. The equestrian events, the earliest to begin in this year's Ethnic Games, will run through July 13. (Xinhua/Chen Shuo)

URUMQI, July 8 (Xinhua) -- The 12th National Traditional Games of Ethnic Minorities of China began its equestrian events on Monday in Zhaosu, Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region.

The equestrian events, the earliest to begin in this year's Ethnic Games, will run through July 13. This edition featured the largest number of participating teams ever, with 229 athletes from 12 delegations.

The competition includes both contest and exhibition events. The contest events feature traditional ethnic horse racing, horseback archery, hada snatching and individual biathlon. Exhibition categories are divided into competitive, technical and comprehensive performances.

In the 2,000-meter traditional ethnic horse racing, Tashi Phuntsok from Xizang Autonomous Region crossed the finish line first.

"I am honored to compete here, and engage with riders from different regions and ethnicities," he said. "I've prepared for this competition for four years, and I'm pleased to have performed to my potential."

Tiger'sLuck|Equestrian events of China's 12th Ethnic Games begin

The 12th National Traditional Games of Ethnic Minorities of China will take place from November 22 to 30 in Sanya, Hainan.

Artists perform during the opening ceremony of the equestrian events at the 12th National Traditional Games of Ethnic Minorities of China in Zhaosu, northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, July 8, 2024. The equestrian events, the earliest to begin in this year's Ethnic Games, will run through July 13. (Xinhua/Chen Shuo)

Delegation of Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region waves to the spectators during the opening ceremony of the equestrian events at the 12th National Traditional Games of Ethnic Minorities of China in Zhaosu, northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, July 8, 2024. The equestrian events, the earliest to begin in this year's Ethnic Games, will run through July 13. (Xinhua/Chen Shuo)

Riders perform during the opening ceremony of the equestrian events at the 12th National Traditional Games of Ethnic Minorities of China in Zhaosu, northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, July 8, 2024. The equestrian events, the earliest to begin in this year's Ethnic Games, will run through July 13. (Xinhua/Chen Shuo)

This photo taken on July 8, 2024 shows the opening ceremony of the equestrian events at the 12th National Traditional Games of Ethnic Minorities of China in Zhaosu, northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region. The equestrian events, the earliest to begin in this year's Ethnic Games, will run through July 13. (Xinhua/Chen Shuo)