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Hong Kong 2016-17 season ends with record turnover

The 2016-17 season in Hong Kong concluded at Sha Tin on Sunday with record turnover and crowd figures.

Sam Clipperton and Kei Chong signing autographs for fans. Photo: HKJC

By the time Solar Hei Hei had won the 11th race, a total of $HK117.4 billion ($A19.2 billion) had been wagered during the season with the $HK1.858 billion ($A304.2 million) on the day a record for an 11-race meeting.

This season's total surpasses the previous best of $HK107.9 billion set in 2014-15 by more than 10 percent and allows the Hong Kong Jockey Club to contribute $HK13.1 billion ($A2.14 billion) to the community via taxation.

Hong Kong Jockey Club CEO Winfried Engelbrecht-Bresges said in a statement the growth was extraordinary.

"It has surprised me how strong it has been," Engelbrecht-Bresges said.

"This time last year we weathered a small economic storm that impacted the region and resulted in a two percent dip in our overall turnover, our first decline in eight seasons.

"To come back from that with a new record of $HK117.456 billion for the season, up 10.7 percent on 2015/16, is a tremendous performance."

This season comprised five more meetings than last season and Engelbrecht-Bresges pointed to the successful impact of commingling on the record turnover figure.

"The incredible interest in Hong Kong racing from the commingling jurisdictions is one of the main drivers in this year's growth," Engelbrecht-Bresges said.

"If you look at last year, the total turnover from commingling was $HK3.47 billion, which was 3.3 percent of the total. This year, with our expanding portfolio of partners, total turnover from commingling was $HK6.5 billion, an astounding increase of 87 percent and 5.7 percent of the total.

"This gives us significant optimism going into next season because we can see that the attractiveness of Hong Kong racing's quality has really captured overseas markets."

During the season 2,167,000 people attended the 88 meetings at Sha Tin and Happy Valley, up on the 2,042,000 the previous year with an average attendance of 24,600.

Monday, 17 July 2017