Hong Kong cyclone delays Olympic horses

Hong Kong cyclone delays Olympic horses

The arrival of Australia's Olympic showjumping horses into Hong Kong has been delayed by the tropical cyclone battering Hong Kong.

Some 10 horses from Australia and Saudi Arabia have been forced to make a 24-hour stopover in Dubai. Their flight was out of Amsterdam. Horses from China, the US and the UAE were unable to depart from The Netherlands and remain in Amsterdam in quarantine.

Australian team manager Brett Mace said that the horses are receiving “Royal treatment” in the stables of Dubai's ruler Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the husband of FEI President HRH Princess Haya Bint Al Hussein.

The tropical storm, Kammuri, has brought heavy rain and strong winds, and forced the closure of schools and businesses. More than 50mm of rain was recorded in most parts of the territory from midnight to noon. Winds up to 122km/h have been reported.

Equestrian event organisers said that the rain should not affect the events, but there has been talk of the eventing cross-country course and the dressage phase being shortened because of the heat and humidity. The three-day-event is scheduled to start on Saturday.

Canada's team of horses arrived on Tuesday night, just before the bad weather hit.

People in Hong Kong have been warned to hunker down while the storm passes, and to stay away from windows.

Categories: LIfe & Style, News