During its heyday, Shanghai Race Club was the epicentre of expat life. However, when the CCP assumed power the Club was disbanded and what was the racecourse was transformed into People’s Square and People’s Park, while the neoclassical Clubhouse later became the Shanghai Art Museum.
Shanghai Race Club was resurrected in 2008 by UK entrepreneur Byron Constable and now has just under 500 members. These include international racehorse owners (Hon. Harry Herbert, owner of Highclere racing), senior racing executives (Simon Bazalgette, CEO Jockey Club), Chinese government officials, global directors of luxury brands and Mainland Chinese celebrities.
The SRC hosts private events in Mainland China and England to bring together proposed and existing members. The main event in England each year is the SRC gathering at Royal Ascot and a pre-Ascot dinner normally hosted in Shanghai.
Bringing racing to the world
Shanghai Race Club aims to globalize English horse racing and transforming this part of British Royal Heritage into the world’s most watched sport. In order to do this, the sport needs to become popular in Mainland China.
The SRC’s greatest challenge in building the sport in Mainland China stems from the way the sport is presented, which is primarily for gamblers. This creates great obstacles in broadcasting the sport in countries such as Mainland China where gambling is forbidden. Furthermore, there is a barrier created by the existing format’s complexity that tends to prohibit interest in following the sport growing among non-gamblers.
Racing is more than gambling
Shanghai Race Club has overcome this challenge with the launch of Royalenclosure.com, which presents the sport in a format that appeals to non-gamblers because it emphasises the sport’s connection with English Royal Heritage and focusses on the competition between thirty-six of the most exciting names competing in the sport. These sides include those of Prince Khalid, HM the Queen, Lady Bamford, Lady Rothschild and others.
Partly inspired by the simplified format used by the Premier League and Formula One to build global markets, Royalenclosure.com is funded by luxury brand sponsorship and sales of licensed merchandise related to the names and racing colours of the thirty-six featured sides through an online retail store.
Getting involved in racing
Royalenclosure.com aims make it simple for people all across the world to purchase fine goods in the racing colours and names of the thirty-six sides competing in the sport, and then follow their side in racing competitions against the others.
The first range of fine goods available on royalenclosure.com are silver Royal Enclosure carriages, miniature models of the original Royal Enclosure carriage used by HM the Queen to attend Royal Ascot every year. Each of the carriages is the size of a Monopoly token and comes with a silk tether in the colours of the thirty-six Royal Enclosure side of your choice.
The expectation is that the silver Royal Enclosure carriage becomes a gift British people feel proud to give to colleagues and friends around the world, and through these exchanges English horse racing will attract a greater non-gambling following and consequently become one of the most popular sports on the planet.