Chinese bid to rival UK horse racing

The Chinese authorities have hired Peter Philips, the eldest grandchild of the Queen, to launch a horse racing industry as competitive as that of Britain.

Philips flew to Beijing last week and launched the China Jockey Club, a body created to run the country's horse racing industry.

Launched on Monday at a grand and formal ceremony, the club occupies one of the largest civic buildings in China's capital Beijing.

As official global ambassador for the China Jockey Club, insiders expect Philips is being reimbursed with shares.

China Horses

There is a level of secrecy surrounding the details of the deal.

Stewart Hosford, the China Jockey’s Club’s overseas secretary general said: "Peter is in the equestrian business and the Chinese value Peter and his connections... Bringing in people like Peter is very important in giving it that credibility."

Ruling party, the Communist Party of China, have backed the creation of the industry. The Telegraph has said this indicates the industry will be a success, and that Philips could become the most celebrated entrepreneur in the Royal family.

The deal is believed to have been arranged in a private capacity.

The officials have also signed up Sir Keith Mills, who ran the campaign to bring the Olympics to the UK, and who met Chinese sporting dignitaries at the Beijing Olympics in 2012.

At present, horse racing on mainland China is limited to a handful of meetings a year. However, with the size of the country's population in mind, the potential for its future is massive.

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