SBD/Issue 152/Facilities & Venues

China Plans To Build $4B Horse Racing Complex Outside Tianjin

China's Planned $4B International Horse Racing
Complex Aims To Create A 'Tianjin Horse City'

China is planning to build a US$4B int'l horse racing complex outside the port city of Tianjin "in a bid to capitalise on growing interest in the sport which was officially banned for almost 60 years," according to Peter Foster of the London TELEGRAPH. The 10-year project, backed by Dubai-based developer Meydan Group, "aims to create a 'Tianjin Horse City' with an international equestrian college, horse-breeding centre, auction base, animal feed factory, racetrack, and 7-star hotel with sweeping, phoenix-shaped grandstand." Meydan Group said that it "had been invited by the Chinese government to use its know-how to take horse racing in China to the next level." Foster notes comparisons are being "drawn with Dubai which held its first race in 1992 with virtually no infrastructure in place, but within a decade was hosting the world's richest race, the $10M Dubai World Cup." China is "hoping to emulate that success, having legalised horse racing in 2008," but sources at the China Equestrian Association "cautioned that the country was still woefully short of the experience and expertise required to run such a project" (London TELEGRAPH, 4/21).

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