The free entry period for the Hong Kong Jockey Club’s three spring Group 1 features, the Audemars Piguet QEII Cup (2000m), the Champions Mile (1600m) and the Chairman’s Sprint Prize (1200m), will close on Monday, 19 March, at 6pm (Hong Kong time).
All three races will be run on the same day for the first time, with the world class contests slated for Sunday, 29 April at Sha Tin Racecourse.
Record prize money is on offer across the three races, with the HK$24 million AP QEII Cup the headlining event. Overseas raiders have carried off the prize 12 times since that contest was first opened to international competitors in 1995, including last year when Japan’s Neorealism was victorious.
Past winners have also hailed from Britain, France, South Africa, Germany and the UAE, as well as Hong Kong.
The Champions Mile and Chairman’s Sprint Prize have received prize money increases for their 2018 renewals. Won by visiting horses from Japan and South Africa in two of the last four renewals, the Champions Mile purse now stands at HK$18 million.
The Chairman’s Sprint Prize, opened to international competitors ahead of the 2016 edition, offers HK$16 million; Australian sprinter Chautauqua claimed the title two years ago, with Lucky Bubbles successful for Hong Kong last year.
All three races ranked in the 2017 International Federation of Horseracing Authorities’ (IFHA) World’s Top 100 Group
Free entries can be submitted via the Jockey Club’s website or through the Club’s appointed agents.