Hong Kong Racing Season Opener Sees Record High Of £134.2m Bet

Turnover for Sha Tin’s 10-race curtain-raising card on Sunday was a record-high HK$1,376bn (£134.2 m), a 6.83 percent rise from 2019, and a record for a season-opening fixture.

That comes despite the Hong Kong Jockey Club continuing to practise strict racecourse attendance controls, where due to the COVID-19 pandemic only owners, trainers, media and officials are permitted to attend.

Commingling, which represents money bets overseas in the Hong Kong pools, also rose year-on-year to HK$247 million ( £ 24.1 million), an 18 percent rise.

Mr Winfried Engelbrecht-Bresges, Hong Kong Jockey Club Chief Executive Officer said: “We had probably the best start we could hope for into the new season, amazing results. We were able to increase the turnover despite the fact that we had to close our OCBB’s for race day. Commingling was HK$247m, an increase of 18 per cent, so from this aspect turnover wise, we are more than delighted.

“I can only say for all of our team members, to get this season on the road was a lot of hard work, a lot of planning and a lot of things behind the scenes. I want to congratulate all of our teams as the hard work from everyone has paid off. We had a good start to the season which is always very important and we look forward to the way that racing continues, so that we can continue to make contributions to the community.”

The 2020/21 Hong Kong racing season is now underway, with the next fixture taking place on Wednesday 9 September at Happy Valley. The action will be shown live on Sky Sports Racing and attheraces.com, in the UK.