TAIPEI (CNA) — A Norwegian triathlete who inadvertently set off a craze in Taiwan for a “lucky” baseball cap will visit the country in November, the Changhua County government said Tuesday.
Gustav Iden, 23, was seen wearing a cap bearing the name of the county’s Shun Tse Temple when he crossed the finish line first in a triathlon in France in September. Since then, the temple in Changhua’s Puyan Township has been flooded with thousands of orders for the “lucky cap,” which it has been handing out free of cost.
The Changhua County government said it has been working hard to persuade Iden to visit, while the Taiwan people have also been appealing to him on social media to do so.
At a press conference Tuesday, Changhua Magistrate Wang Hui-mei (王惠美) said she has invited Iden to attend the Changhua Marathon Festival, a series of seven marathons that will be held in the county from October to December.
Iden has indicated that he will visit Taiwan for three days in November, despite his tight training schedule in preparation for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, Wang said.
During the three-day visit, Iden will be the pacer in the famous Tianzhong Marathon on Nov. 10, Wang said.
The Norwegian champion athlete will also visit Shun Tse Temple, in observance of a Taiwanese custom to give thanks at a temple after one’s wishes are granted, Wang said.
In a pre-recorded video played at the press conference, Iden thanked the Taiwanese people, especially Wang, for inviting him to visit, and wished all the participants in the festival “the very best of luck.”
By Wu Che-hao and Chiang Yi-ching