The Hong Kong Jockey Club has cancelled its scheduled fixture at Happy Valley “in view of the imminent threat to the safety of racegoers, jockeys and employees, and to the welfare of racehorses”.
The HKJC announced in a statement that Wednesday’s eight-race card would not go ahead, as civil unrest continues to escalate in the city.
The statement read: “The Hong Kong Jockey Club today (September 18) announced that the race meeting at Happy Valley Racecourse tonight has been cancelled in view of the imminent threat to the safety of racegoers, jockeys and employees, and to the welfare of racehorses.
“In organising race meetings, the club always puts safety as a top priority. It is our responsibility to ensure that racehorses, racegoers, jockeys and employees are safe at all times.
“The club has been monitoring the situation in Hong Kong closely. It has conducted a thorough risk assessment of the race meeting tonight and concluded that it should be cancelled in order to preserve the security and safety of people and horses.”
Neil Callan was among the jockeys who would have been in action, with seven rides in his case.
A spokesman for HKJC added: “Our concerns are tied to potential social unrest in the vicinity tonight, the very real threat of a disturbance or possible violence at Happy Valley Racecourse, and uncertainty regarding transportation in and around Happy Valley and Causeway Bay for racegoers, jockeys and employees and horses entering or leaving the racecourse throughout the evening.”
“This is a very difficult and most unfortunate decision to make, but public safety is of paramount importance to the Club. We hope the racing community and the Hong Kong public will understand our reasons for doing so.”