Longines Hong Kong Masters Set for Big Return
Tuesday 13th January 2015
The Longines Hong Kong Masters will return next month bigger, bolder and more exciting than ever. Now entering its third year in Hong Kong, the $US1 Million CSI 5 * event was officially launched at a packed press conference today at the JW Marriott Hotel.
"Our series and concept is now truly global and one step further to realizing our ambition to bring show jumping into the international spotlight,” said EEM World CEO Christophe Ameeuw.
More than 32,000 local and international visitors are expected to attend the 2015 Longines Hong Kong Masters from February 13-15 to witness world class competitions including the Longines Speed Challenge, the Hong Kong Jockey Club Trophy, Gucci Gold Cup, and the $US700,000 Longines Grand Prix.
This year’s line up of riders will include the current world number 1 ranked Scott Brash, European champion Roger Yves Bost, equestrian legend Ludger Beerbaum and last year’s winner of the Longines Grand Prix Henrik von Eckermann and current World Champion Jeroen Dubbledam. Hong Kong will be represented by female rising star Raena Leung. The young rider is looking forward to rubbing shoulders with the best riders in the world. “It is a huge learning experience to come here and ride against these people, it helps to develop my career and competition experience,” Leung said.
Hong Kong Equestrian Federation Chairman Michael Lee welcomed the Longines Hong Kong Masters back for its third year.
“The Hong Kong Equestrian Federation is delighted that Hong Kong can have such a major international show jumping event in the city and help promote the sport to the community and to the region."
"It is a great experience for our riders such as Raena to measure up against the best in the world and unique to be able to do so at home,” said Lee.
The 2015 Longines Hong Kong Masters is the Asian leg of the FEI recognised Masters Grand Slam Indoor series that now includes events on three continents: Asia with the Longines Hong Kong Masters, America with the Longines Los Angeles Masters and Europe with the Gucci Paris Masters.
Mr Juan-Carlos Capelli Vice President and Head of International Marketing for the event’s major partner Longines said it is exciting to be part of the Hong Kong event as it enters its third year.
"As the Title Partner and Official Timekeeper of this prestigious event, we are looking forward to see the world’s elite riders compete here in Hong Kong.”
"We are also proud to present two highlights of the weekend, the breathtaking Longines Speed Challenge, a competition combining time and speed on Friday, and the much anticipated Longines Grand Prix on Sunday,” said Capelli.
Longines Ambassador of Elegance Aaron Kwok, who is a great fan of horses, will attend the Longines Grand Prix on Sunday as he did last year.
The Hong Kong Jockey Club, celebrating 130 years, also continues its support of the Longines Hong Kong Masters in 2015.
"The Hong Kong Masters is just three years old, but already it is Asia’s largest indoor five star competition and one of the world’s premier show jumping events. This is a strong testament to the vision of EEM, who first conceived this event. Also to Longines, who have been so steadfast in their sponsorship,” said HKJC CEO Winfried Engelbrecht-Bresges.
"What makes the Masters so special for Hong Kong is that it gives us a rare opportunity to see world class equestrians and horses in action. Hong Kong first got a taste of this during the 2008 Beijing Olympics, when we hosted the equestrian events, and I think it opened people’s eyes to the richness and diversity of equestrian sports."
The HKJC along with organisers EEM World has collaborated to develop a novel competition at this year’s event - the HKJC 130th Race of the Riders which will follow immediately after The Hong Kong Jockey Club Trophy on Friday 13th at 6.45pm (TBC).
Some of Hong Kong’s leading jockeys including runaway premiership leader Joao Moreira and last year’s number 1 rider Zac Purton will be pitched against some of the world’s best show jumping riders. It is a rare chance for some of Hong Kong’s most popular jockeys to showcase their skills as horsemen. It’s the first event of its kind ever staged in the world.
Away from the competition arena there will be plenty of activities to keep people of all ages entertained including the Prestige Village, performances by Spanish equestrian artist Santi Serra, a Kids Corner, Michelin star cuisine and much more.