Oklahoma team wins international oil and gas competition in Beijing
When Jon Clark landed in Beijing earlier this summer, he thought he was only in town for a conference.
But when he came home, he brought a unique souvenir along — a first place title in, of all things, oil and natural gas knowledge.
Clark and Jiang Zheng, both recent graduates from the University of Oklahoma, were members of an Oklahoma team that won PetroBowl China 2012, a tournament that tests teams' knowledge in areas such as oil field trivia, calculations and the history of the oil and natural gas industry.
This year's competition was held at a Society of Petroleum Engineers conference in Beijing.
Clark and Zheng graduated from OU in May. After graduation, Clark took a job with ConocoPhillips in Houston, and Zheng is in graduate school at Peking University in Beijing.
When the two arrived at the conference, Clark said, they didn't even plan to enter the tournament.
But later, the two were talking to a student named Aidar Svyatov, a native of Kazakhstan.
They mentioned they'd recently graduated from OU. Svyatov said he knew the area well, since he is a graduate student at the University of Tulsa.
The three decided to enter the tournament as an all-Oklahoma team, Clark said.
They spent a while feeling out the competition, he said, and they thought they might do well.
“We've historically had a really good team at PetroBowl,” he said.