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Equine research funding given a boost by the Hong Kong Jockey Club's new research foundation Image

Equine research funding given a boost by the Hong Kong Jockey Club's new research foundation

Monday, 8 February 2021

The Hong Kong Jockey Club (the Club) has announced the establishment of the Hong Kong Jockey Club Equine Welfare Research Foundation (the Foundation) with a donation of HK$600 million from the Club for the enhancement of equine care and welfare locally and in other racing jurisdictions across the globe.

As the first research foundation dedicated to equine welfare in Hong Kong, the Foundation will provide funding to support research studies on equine welfare and offer scholarships to doctorate students in related fields.

“The establishment of the Foundation underscores the Club’s long-term commitment to constantly enhancing equine welfare. The Club has long-established policies and protocols to ensure that equine welfare is maintained to the highest standard. We have also built and operated state-of-the-art equine facilities in both Hong Kong and Conghua to provide world-class veterinary care for our racehorses. We would like to extend our commitment to the promotion of professional and academic research on equine welfare. I am confident that the Foundation will effectively promote outstanding equine research and the successful application of the research outcomes to benefit equine welfare not only in Hong Kong but also around the world,” said the Club’s Chief Executive Officer Winfried Engelbrecht-Bresges.

The Foundation is supervised by a Board of Directors. Based on the recommendation of a Veterinary Advisory Committee comprising five experienced equine veterinary clinicians and research scientists, the Board will determine the priority equine-related research topics in each annual grant cycle. It will also ensure that the Foundation adopts a stringent approach in the selection and funding of research proposals of the highest quality and potential.

Many practical improvements in equine health and welfare, such as the diagnosis of injuries at an early stage, have been made possible as a result of quality scientific research studies and the successful application of their outcomes. The Foundation expects that more research studies will be carried out in important areas including the reduction of injuries and diseases, promotion of racehorse safety during training and racing, and improved quality of life for horses after retirement.

“The Foundation’s mission is not limited to providing funding for research studies. We require the people we fund to share their research outcomes and knowledge with our international industry peers and the public through journals and international forums. In addition, the Foundation will organise an international conference every four years to provide a platform for the academia, racing officials, trainers and horse owners to discuss the ways to apply the research outcomes in their respective fields. Through the provision of scholarships, the Foundation will also nurture young talents in the studies of equine welfare research and clinical care,” said Andrew Harding, the Club’s Executive Director of Racing.

The Foundation will invite applications for research funding and scholarships from the global research community annually, with the maximum funding for an individual project reaching HK$2 million. The first round of applications will open in March, and the research topics will be announced on the Foundation’s website in February. A total of approximately six research studies are expected to be granted funding in the first round.

For more information visit the Foundation's website by clicking here>.

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