Pavel Toropov

Pavel Toropov

Involved in competitive sport since the age of four, after completing a PhD in Ecology, Pavel worked in Colombia, Brazil, the UAE, South Korea and China. His love of outdoors sees him setting courses for ultra-marathons in Bhutan, powder skiing in Japan and guiding tourists to both the North and South Poles. He also crossed South America by bicycle, pedalling over 12,000 kilometres, alone. A former competitive distance runner, Pavel speaks English, Chinese, Spanish, Russian, Portuguese and French and supports AFC Wimbledon, his local football club.

Latest from Pavel Toropov

How Dagestan’s ‘Shaolin Temple’ produced UFC stars Zabit Magomedsharipov and Muslim Salikhov

Zabit Magomedsharipov and Muslim Salikhov’s traditional martial arts values instilled in them as students at a wushu academy founded by a Dagestani philosopher in an empty field.

8 Aug 2020 - 7:50PM

Zabit Magomedsharipov and Muslim Salikhov’s traditional martial arts values instilled in them as students at a wushu academy founded by a Dagestani philosopher in an empty field.

How Dagestan’s ‘Shaolin Temple’ produced UFC stars Zabit Magomedsharipov and Muslim Salikhov
‘The most rewarding coaching ever’: Down’s syndrome adults taught surfing, and other physical activities, free of charge by charity

Canadian Jeff Rotmeyer saw too many young adults with Down’s syndrome die. He set up charity The Love 21 Foundation in Hong Kong to keep them active and extend their lives.

26 Jul 2020 - 6:37PM

Canadian Jeff Rotmeyer saw too many young adults with Down’s syndrome die. He set up charity The Love 21 Foundation in Hong Kong to keep them active and extend their lives.

‘The most rewarding coaching ever’: Down’s syndrome adults taught surfing, and  other physical activities, free of charge by charity
New method to combat illegal wildlife trade reveals whether animals were raised in captivity or captured from the wild

Scientists at the University of Hong Kong can now tell whether songbirds for sale at markets have been wild-caught and are developing a host of other techniques to combat the illegal wildlife trade in the city and beyond.

9 Jul 2020 - 9:10PM

Scientists at the University of Hong Kong can now tell whether songbirds for sale at markets have been wild-caught and are developing a host of other techniques to combat the illegal wildlife trade in the city and beyond.

New method to combat illegal wildlife trade reveals whether animals were raised in captivity or captured from the wild
Meet Cai Zongju, the former boxing world champion shrugging off gender stereotypes in China

Cai Zongju was once asked by a TV interviewer why she chose to be a boxer because ‘you are a girl’ and ‘mommy’s treasure’. But the former IBF world minimum weight champ takes the stereotypes in her stride.

27 Jun 2020 - 6:56PM

Cai Zongju was once asked by a TV interviewer why she chose to be a boxer because ‘you are a girl’ and ‘mommy’s treasure’. But the former IBF world minimum weight champ takes the stereotypes in her stride.

Meet Cai Zongju, the former boxing world champion shrugging off gender stereotypes in China
New ITRA president Bob Crowley plans to develop the body’s technological abilities; wants a clear distinction from UTMB

Bob Crowley replaces Michel Poletti, sparking the second chapter of the International Trail Running Association based on technology and independence.

1 May 2020 - 9:15AM

Bob Crowley replaces Michel Poletti, sparking the second chapter of the International Trail Running Association based on technology and independence.

New ITRA president Bob Crowley plans to develop the body’s technological abilities; wants a clear distinction from UTMB
Xiong Chaozhong – the coal miner turned pro boxer who became China’s first world champion

‘Pulling coal carts was about technique, not strength. Boxing is the same,’ recalls Xiong Chaozhong, who laboured for 10 yuan a day before turning pro without a single amateur fight.

15 Apr 2020 - 10:43PM

‘Pulling coal carts was about technique, not strength. Boxing is the same,’ recalls Xiong Chaozhong, who laboured for 10 yuan a day before turning pro without a single amateur fight.

Xiong Chaozhong – the coal miner turned pro boxer who became China’s first world champion
How Chinese in Russia pried the China tourism trade from Russian companies’ hands, and why tour guides don’t miss their absence amid coronavirus

Lured to Russia on artificially cheap tours, Chinese visitors are shuffled by Chinese guides from one Chinese-owned shop to another to buy overpriced souvenirs. No wonder Chinese-speaking Russian guides aren’t bemoaning their absence amid pandemic.

30 Mar 2020 - 5:21PM

Lured to Russia on artificially cheap tours, Chinese visitors are shuffled by Chinese guides from one Chinese-owned shop to another to buy overpriced souvenirs. No wonder Chinese-speaking Russian guides aren’t bemoaning their absence amid pandemic.

How Chinese in Russia pried the China tourism trade from Russian companies’ hands, and why tour guides don’t miss their absence amid coronavirus
Russian UFC fighter Petr Yan hits back at online abuse by Iranian novice over his Chinese roots

Iranian MMA fighter posts insulting pictures and comments on Instagram aimed at UFC bantamweight contender Petr Yan, who has a paternal Chinese grandfather.

27 Mar 2020 - 4:25PM

Iranian MMA fighter posts insulting pictures and comments on Instagram aimed at UFC bantamweight contender Petr Yan, who has a paternal Chinese grandfather.

Russian UFC fighter Petr Yan hits back at online abuse by Iranian novice over his Chinese roots
Spartan makes a move into trail running offering global events and massive prize money

The Ultra-Trail World Tour serves Europe, and more recently Asia, but Spartan believes the Americas have been neglected and athletes deserve rewards

11 Mar 2020 - 9:50PM

The Ultra-Trail World Tour serves Europe, and more recently Asia, but Spartan believes the Americas have been neglected and athletes deserve rewards

Spartan makes a move into trail running offering global events and massive prize money
UTMB adds a new race in Chiang Mai with runners handed exclusive challenge on ‘The Roof of Thailand’

Four of the five UTMB events are now in Asia as the organisation adds one more to the growing list of races

9 Mar 2020 - 9:49AM

Four of the five UTMB events are now in Asia as the organisation adds one more to the growing list of races

UTMB adds a new race in Chiang Mai with runners handed exclusive challenge on ‘The Roof of Thailand’
Trail running in Saudi Arabia at the vanguard of change as the kingdom opens to tourism

Men and women are running together as customs relax within running clubs and the first trail race comes to the conservative nation.

2 Mar 2020 - 10:01PM

Men and women are running together as customs relax within running clubs and the first trail race comes to the conservative nation.

Trail running in Saudi Arabia at the vanguard of change as the kingdom opens to tourism
How leeches could help prevent future coronavirus outbreaks: blood suckers provide evidence of wildlife that carry animal viruses

Blood in leeches’ stomachs contains DNA that shows the diversity of wildlife in a certain area. This information can be used to combat the illegal wildlife trade, and thus reduce animal-to-human infection risks.

18 Feb 2020 - 9:32PM

Blood in leeches’ stomachs contains DNA that shows the diversity of wildlife in a certain area. This information can be used to combat the illegal wildlife trade, and thus reduce animal-to-human infection risks.

How leeches could help prevent future coronavirus outbreaks: blood suckers provide evidence of wildlife that carry animal viruses
Coronavirus outbreak: runner completes 100km indoors to avoid infection, but community not convinced by his feat

When a runner went viral for completing 50km around his flat, to avoid to virus, another stepped up to the plate and doubled the distance.

7 Feb 2020 - 2:12PM

When a runner went viral for completing 50km around his flat, to avoid to virus, another stepped up to the plate and doubled the distance.

Coronavirus outbreak: runner completes 100km indoors to avoid infection, but community not convinced by his feat
HK100 winner, ‘unknown’ mainland Chinese runner You Peiquan, is intent on running his own way and only revealing his spirit during races

You Peiquan adheres to traditional ethics by keeping his spirit and vigour hidden until he strikes during race time.

6 Feb 2020 - 9:45AM

You Peiquan adheres to traditional ethics by keeping his spirit and vigour hidden until he strikes during race time.

HK100 winner, ‘unknown’ mainland Chinese runner You Peiquan, is intent on running his own way and only revealing his spirit during races
Coronavirus: Chinese runners forced to train indoors, as one man completes 50km around two tables

The coronavirus means runners are unable or unwilling to venture outdoors, but it will not stop China’s love or running, even if they have to do it indoors.

6 Feb 2020 - 9:46AM

The coronavirus means runners are unable or unwilling to venture outdoors, but it will not stop China’s love or running, even if they have to do it indoors.

Coronavirus: Chinese runners forced to train indoors, as one man completes 50km around two tables
First Chinese person to walk to South Pole says feat is to highlight climate crisis to next generation

Wen Xu decides the best way to highlight climate change is by exploring affected places after falling through thin ice to a lake that should not have been there.

28 Jan 2020 - 10:19PM

Wen Xu decides the best way to highlight climate change is by exploring affected places after falling through thin ice to a lake that should not have been there.

First Chinese person to walk to South Pole says feat is to highlight climate crisis to next generation
Francesca Canepa wins Oman by UTMB 130km, as Nepali runners dominate 50km and local athletes do their country proud

The 170km race is won by Eion Keith and Kaori Niwa, while eight of the top 15 spots in the 50km go to Omani athletes

5 Dec 2019 - 2:16PM

The 170km race is won by Eion Keith and Kaori Niwa, while eight of the top 15 spots in the 50km go to Omani athletes

Francesca Canepa wins Oman by UTMB 130km, as Nepali runners dominate 50km and local athletes do their country proud
UTMB’s second race in China set for 2020 debut, as Panda Trail promises a contrasting route to Gaoligong

There will be three distances at the race in Sichuan – 120km, 60km and 30km – as the brand shows confidence in the appetite of the Chinese market.

29 Nov 2019 - 8:00AM

There will be three distances at the race in Sichuan – 120km, 60km and 30km – as the brand shows confidence in the appetite of the Chinese market.

UTMB’s second race in China set for 2020 debut, as Panda Trail promises a contrasting route to Gaoligong
Oman by UTMB – who to watch, as Mira Rai returns from injury and Michel Poletti takes on the 170km

The event takes place this weekend over three distances – 50km, 130km and 170km.

2 Dec 2019 - 9:44AM

The event takes place this weekend over three distances – 50km, 130km and 170km.

Oman by UTMB – who to watch, as Mira Rai returns from injury and Michel Poletti takes on the 170km
The sole voice of China’s 50 million-strong cycling boom learned his English from TV show ‘Top Gear’

The influential commentator says races in China need to come up with something unique to compete in a crowded market place.

23 Nov 2019 - 9:11AM

The influential commentator says races in China need to come up with something unique to compete in a crowded market place.

The sole voice of China’s 50 million-strong cycling boom learned his English from TV show ‘Top Gear’
Tokyo 2020 Paralympics: How one-armed Wang Jiachao became a gold medallist – ‘I could swim, but just enough not to drown’

Chinese athlete’s talent spotted at just 10 years old and he has not looked back, winning swimming medals before changing to triathlon.

6 Nov 2019 - 9:19AM

Chinese athlete’s talent spotted at just 10 years old and he has not looked back, winning swimming medals before changing to triathlon.

Tokyo 2020 Paralympics: How one-armed Wang Jiachao became a gold medallist – ‘I could swim, but just enough not to drown’
Haute Route’s China launch a success of teamwork as mainland riders and organisers find their feet at new event

Multi-day races are new to China, so there was a ‘mixed bag of abilities’ in the local riders

1 Nov 2019 - 5:06PM

Multi-day races are new to China, so there was a ‘mixed bag of abilities’ in the local riders

Haute Route’s China launch a success of teamwork as mainland riders and organisers find their feet at new event
HK100 winner Lu Yangchun’s journey from a remote village to one of China’s top track and trail runners

The steeplechase champion is considered modest and hard working by those who know her.

28 Sep 2019 - 1:34PM

The steeplechase champion is considered modest and hard working by those who know her.

HK100 winner Lu Yangchun’s journey from a remote village to one of China’s top track and trail runners
UTMB 2019: Chinese runners reflect on poor pacing, beer downing and lesson learning

The Chinese arrive in Chamonix with high expectations, but leave winless and full of new learning, ready to take on the famous races next year

18 Sep 2019 - 11:12AM

The Chinese arrive in Chamonix with high expectations, but leave winless and full of new learning, ready to take on the famous races next year

UTMB 2019: Chinese runners reflect on poor pacing, beer downing and lesson learning
UTMB announces new race in Pyrenees, surrounded by mountains and alpine lakes

Another race added to the list of Ultra Trail du Mont Blanc branded events as the total rises to five, including the original in Chamonix.

6 Sep 2019 - 4:36PM

Another race added to the list of Ultra Trail du Mont Blanc branded events as the total rises to five, including the original in Chamonix.

UTMB announces new race in Pyrenees, surrounded by mountains and alpine lakes
Opinion | UTMB 2019: Liang Jing plans to take Xavier Thevenard into the pain cave as he shapes for Rocky Balboa-style victory

Liang Jing is as hard as nails, and loves to drag his opponents into the pain cave and outlast them all, says UTMB TV live commentator

18 Sep 2019 - 11:22AM

Liang Jing is as hard as nails, and loves to drag his opponents into the pain cave and outlast them all, says UTMB TV live commentator

UTMB 2019: Liang Jing plans to take Xavier Thevenard into the pain cave as he shapes for Rocky Balboa-style victory
Opinion | UTMB 2019: who are the elite Chinese runners to look out for? Dark horses and favourites at Chamonix’s famous race

Chinese runners are taking part in a range of races – the UTMB, the OCC and the CCC – and this year, they don’t have surprise on their side.

23 Aug 2019 - 12:08PM

Chinese runners are taking part in a range of races – the UTMB, the OCC and the CCC – and this year, they don’t have surprise on their side.

UTMB 2019: who are the elite Chinese runners to look out for? Dark horses and favourites at Chamonix’s famous race
China’s free solo climber finds ‘time that belongs to me’ on ropeless climbs

Huang Zhouwen is one of very few free solo climbers in China, who is focused and picks challenging but beautiful routes.

22 Aug 2019 - 10:27AM

Huang Zhouwen is one of very few free solo climbers in China, who is focused and picks challenging but beautiful routes.

China’s free solo climber finds ‘time that belongs to me’ on ropeless climbs
Inside the vast Chinese caves where SARS may have originated and a new species of flesh-eating fungus has been discovered

There are countless kilometres of claustrophobia-inducing underground caves in Yunnan, full of bats and home to a newly discovered species of fungus.

20 Aug 2019 - 5:32PM

There are countless kilometres of claustrophobia-inducing underground caves in Yunnan, full of bats and home to a newly discovered species of fungus.

Inside the vast Chinese caves where SARS may have originated and a new species of flesh-eating fungus has been discovered
Fingerless tennis pro swaps tour life for teaching Hong Kong youngsters and could not be happier

Born without fingers on his left hand, Brett Hillier didn’t let his handicap stop him turning pro – and now he passes on his life lessons to his students.

10 Aug 2019 - 8:10AM

Born without fingers on his left hand, Brett Hillier didn’t let his handicap stop him turning pro – and now he passes on his life lessons to his students.

Fingerless tennis pro swaps tour life for teaching Hong Kong youngsters and could not be happier