Czech expat sets up runners website to focus attention on Taiwan

Novotný dreams of direct flights between island and Prague

  2007
'Taiwan Beast Runner' Petr Novotny (CNA, Petr Novotny photo)  

'Taiwan Beast Runner' Petr Novotny (CNA, Petr Novotny photo)  

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — As Czech Senate President Miloš Vystrčil wrapped up his historic visit to Taiwan Friday (Sept. 4), attention focused on a compatriot of his who set up a website about running on the island.

Petr Novotný, 35, married to a Taiwanese indigenous woman, launched the site “Taiwan Beast Runners” to encourage people around the world to admire the island’s natural beauty, as well as fire up locals and expats to run across its more isolated scenery, CNA reported.

Having moved to Taiwan eight years ago, Novotný said he loved the country, and echoing his country’s senate president’s words, he said he was also Taiwanese. Having direct flights between Taiwan and the Czech capital Prague would be a dream come true, he added.

The Czech, who came to the country to study at National Taiwan University (NTU), was not a professional runner. It was only after a stay at the home of his prospective wife in Nantou County that he found out that running 40 kilometer between Puli and Wushe and back was not that hard.

Novotný and his wife, Eva Lobo, set up the website and organized runs which attracted 1,000 participants from more than 20 countries, CNA reported. He also ran in prominent competitions in Taiwan and overseas, including the annual run up Taipei 101.