Leading jockey Hugh Bowman has been selected to represent Australia in the 2015 International Jockeys’ Championship at Happy Valley in Hong Kong on December 9.
The International Jockeys’ Championship is held in Hong Kong every year in the lead-up to the Hong Kong International Raceday at Sha Tin and gives 12 of the best jockeys in the world the opportunity to compete across four races for a share in the prize pool of HK$800,000.
Bowman will return for another crack at the International Jockeys’ Championship and he will have the opportunity to join Kerrin McEvoy (2013) and Damien Oliver (2003) as the only Australian winners of the event.
Joining Bowman in International Jockeys’ Championship will be his Sydney rival James McDonald, who has been selected to represent New Zealand.
McDonald made his debut in the International Jockeys’ Championship 12 months ago and he took out the first leg on Expectator before he ended up finishing a close third behind Japanese star Yuichi Fukunaga and Joao Moreira.
Bowman could be joined in the event by fellow Australian hoops Brett Prebble and Zac Purton, who are both a chance to secure three of the positions that are still available for locally-based hoops.
Ryan Moore is no stranger to Australia racing fans and he has been selected to represent the United Kingdom, while Maxime Guyon (France), Keita Tosaki (Japan), Gavin Lerena (South Africa), Silvestre De Sousa (United Kingdom) and Victor Espinoza (United States) have also been selected to take part in the event.
Hong Kong Jockey Club’s Executive Director Of Racing William Nader was thrilled with the quality of hoops that have committed to ride in the event and he believes that this will be one of the most competitive editions in recent memory.
“This is an outstanding selection of some of the world’s very best jockeys, which is something we have come to expect at the LONGINES IJC, an occasion well-established as one of world racing’s greatest nights,” Nader said.
“The LONGINES IJC is quite possibly the most intense and competitive jockeys’ competition anywhere in the world.
“One notable change to this year’s IJC is that we have one more Hong Kong-based rider than in the past.
“This reflects the depth of quality we have in the Hong Kong jockey ranks, a fact emphasised considering riders like Zac Purton, Douglas Whyte, Brett Prebble and Karis Teetan are battling to secure the two available places.”
Frankie Dettori is the most successful jockey in the history of the International Jockeys’ Championship after taking out the event in 1999, 2001 and 2011.