China and the United Arab Emirates-based Meydan Group are partnering to hold a groundbreaking race meeting next month at Jinma Racecourse. Race fields will consist of horses shipped from the U.A.E.
The inaugural staging of Chengdu Dubai International Cup race day is scheduled for April 6. It is a collaborative effort of the Meydan Group—under the Emirates Racing Authority's rules of racing—and the Chengdu Municipal Government, Chengdu Sports Bureau, the Wenjiang District Government and China Gunagsha Group. Jinma Racecourse is located in the Garden City of Chengdu in Wenjiang District.
The five-race card is highlighted by two races sponsored by official timekeeper Longines: the Chengdu Dubai International Cup at 2,200 meters (about 1 3/8 miles) and the Wenjiang Meydan Classic at 1,600 meters (about one mile).
The supporting card features the Meydan Mile, the Guangsha Handicap at 1,400 meters (about seven furlongs) and the Wenjiang Sprint at 1,200 meters (about six furlongs).
Competing horses are prepared by Dubai Racing Club trainers and will be ridden by jockeys who compete during the U.A.E. race season, including the Dubai World Cup Carnival.
The meeting will be the first held in mainland China to feature international horses undergoing both import and export quarantine procedures. The competing horses will be shipped back the U.A.E. after the card.
"This is an exciting strategic partnership that we have entered into to assist the Chinese authorities in developing the sport of Thoroughbred racing," said Malih Al Basti, Meydan Group board member and chairman of the Meydan Racing Committee. "With this groundbreaking meeting we have opened up channels of cooperation that will continue to grow between the U.A.E. and China.
"Meydan Racecourse, the Dubai World Cup Carnival, and the Dubai World Cup are seen as pinnacles of racing excellence around the world, and we hope to share the strong equine culture that underpins the U.A.E.'s passion for this sport with the people of Chengdu through this event."
H.E. Zhongfu Lou, honorary chairman of Guangsha Group said: "China Guangsha Group was the only foreign enterprise to be a main sponsor of the 2010 and 2011 Dubai World Cup days, a move which helped introduce the Dubai World Cup and international racing to Chengdu, China.
"As part of our commitment to social responsibility, Guangsha Group will use this inaugural race day as a platform to push the development of all aspects of the equine and racing industries, such as racing, breeding, and horse care."
Jinma Racecourse, the only equestrian facility in the west of China, has successfully hosted the China Equestrian Festival for the past three years. Track management is to continue promoting the development of the China's equine industry as a legacy of the Chengdu Dubai International race day.