Asian Racing Federation President Dr Koji Sato formally handed Hong Kong stewardship of the 35th Asian Racing Conference before gathered delegates at last night’s (July 20) closing ceremony of this year’s 34th convocation in Istanbul, Turkey.
Hong Kong Jockey Club Chairman Mr T Brian Stevenson was on hand to accept the ARF flag on behalf of Hong Kong.
“It is a great privilege to host the world’s foremost racing conference, an event which, as we have witnessed this week, provides a forum for discussion, innovation and ultimately achievement that will continue to drive forward this great sport,” said Mr Stevenson, before adding, “the conference provides an effective platform from which we can continue to take Asian racing to the world.”
Hong Kong has hosted the event twice previously, in 1978 and in 1991.
The 35th ARC will take place in May 2014 and Club CEO Mr Winfried Engelbrecht-Bresges is already looking forward to the event.
“The sport is an intrinsic element of Hong Kong’s social DNA, and with Hong Kong horseracing recognized as amongst the best in the world, it is fitting that we have this opportunity to host what is the industry’s most important conference; an event that shapes racing’s future on an international level. We look forward to sharing the Hong Kong experience with the world in 2014,” said Mr Engelbrecht-Bresges.
At the conclusion of the 34th ARC, themed Bridging Worlds, Dr Sato paid tribute to this year’s host, the Jockey Club of Turkey, and presaged a successful Conference in Hong Kong.
“Istanbul was the perfect venue for staging the 34th Asian Racing Conference; prompting discussion of diversified topics and bridging the world of racing between east and west and globally,” said Dr Sato. “We have enjoyed intriguing speakers and panellists from various facets of racing, business and entertainment fields. The 34th ARC successfully concluded with 597 international delegates and a total of 809 people from 47 countries in attendance, making this congregation the most internationally attended and largest in scale. We thank the organizing committee and the Jockey Club of Turkey for their generous hospitality in welcoming us here.
“That said, we are most excited that the 35th ARC will take us to the heart of Asia and trust that all delegates will enjoy not only another carefully crafted programme but also some of the best racing anywhere in the world, as we head to Hong Kong in 2014,” he concluded.