Will the real World Championships Please Stand Up

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Ed DeRosa

December 11th, 2014

The Hong Kong International Races are Sunday at Sha Tin (the race card starts at 11:55 p.m. ET on Saturday), and those with no familiarity with racing from there can get a taste at 6 a.m. ET Wednesday morning with partial card coverage from Happy Valley.

Kellie Reilly will use this space to provide insights on the International Races throughout the week, but to kick things off and get everyone pumped up for this huge day (night) of racing, I thought I’d share these videos that the Hong Kong Jockey Club provided to its simulcast partners.

This one is interesting because it includes an official going out of her way to call the International Races “the turf world championships”, which to me seems a shot across the bow at the Breeders’ Cup calling its races “world championships.”

It’s difficult enough determining who is the best horse in North America let alone in the world, so for now if one world-class entity uses the term World Championships then why not all of them.

Similarly, trying to figure out which circuit is best at this point is akin to determining which “power conference” is best in college football. We all have our own ideas, but there’s no way to know for sure because there’s no way you’ll get the best to face each other with any consistency.

If pressed, though, I’d probably give the nod to the Dubai World Cup program as the one that gets the best international competition throughout an entire card with the Breeders’ Cup second, and the Eastern races (Japan & Hong Kong) tied for third. Events like Royal Ascot, the Arc, and the Melbourne Cup are certainly in the mix as among the most prestigious in the world, but lack the depth of international participation that the aforementioned quartet seems to deliver on an annual basis.

This video is a bit longer and shows more of a build up to the International Races. I wish North American racing did more of these sort of teasers and trailers for our Big Events. America’s Best Racing has produced some sizzle reels, and Breeders’ Cup has done well with post-race wrap ups, but we need more. They’re easy to share with friends and on social media and can help generate conversation—as these two Hong Kong videos did for this blog.