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Horse racing became a fixture in Hong Kong in 1841 but enjoyment of this sport was originally confined to the city’s elite. Today, a trip to one of the city’s world-class tracks — Happy Valley on Hong Kong Island or Sha Tin in the New Territories — will confirm that it has very much gone mainstream since.

The racing season starts in September and runs to July of the following year. Any meeting will provide a taste of the local passion for racing, with hundreds of fans armed with racing guides intently listening to radio commentary, gripping their betting sheets and cheering on their favourites. To experience all the real glamour and spectacle of the sport, try to see the Hong Kong Derby, the Queen Elizabeth II Cup or the ‘turf world championship’ Hong Kong International Races, when some of the richest racing purses in the sport attract horses and jockeys from all over the world and the competition is intense. Don’t miss ‘Happy Wednesdays’ at Happy Valley Racecourse where you can enjoy night carnivals season-round alongside the thrill of live racing, with music, bites, drinks and more!

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