Shannon handles 76 thoroughbreds destined for China

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Pic Arthur Ellis.

Shannon Airport has handled 76 horses purchased for a Chinese businessman, with the Irish thoroughbreds flying to Beijing on board a Boeing 747 Freighter.

The horses were purchased for Chinese businessman, Zhang Yuesheng by Kildare based bloodstock agency BBA Ireland, and at €3 million ($3.1 million), was the single biggest movement of Irish horses to China.

Chief commercial officer for Shannon Group, Shannon Airport’s operator Andrew Murphy says: “We are well used to ‘firsts’ at Shannon but having a record airlift of Irish horses to China from here was very exciting for all concerned.  BBA Ireland are experts in this market and we are delighted to be working with them.”

BBA Ireland shipping director, Ann Munnelly says: “We have been working on this for three months, since the horses were purchased.  Many experienced hands have been involved in this and it has been one of our most ambitious projects to date so we are very excited to have completed it.”

A team of professional flying grooms and a vet, with a team of 30 handlers on the ground were involved in the three hour process of loading the animals at Shannon.