Etihad Cargo has successfully shipped a very special consignment of show jumping horses from Belgium to Hong Kong for the annual Hong Kong Longines Masters. It is the second year in a row that the freight division of Etihad Airways has been entrusted to transport the elite horses across the globe for the world’s most prestigious show jumping event.
Fifty one horses were accompanied by eight professional grooms and a veterinarian as they made the round-trip journey from Liège Airport to Hong Kong International Airport.
Among the precious cargo were the Hong Kong Longines Grand Prix winner Aquila HDC, Paris Longines Grand Prix winner Cornet D’Amour, as well as other champions including Pegase du Murier, Silver Deux de Virton*HDC and Garfield.
Justin Carr, Etihad Cargo vice president, said: “Longines Masters is the top show jumping event in the world and we are very proud to have been entrusted to bring these prized animals to this competition.
“Our equine customers are very important to us and our focus on safe, comfortable and reliable services made us a preferred partner for these specialist services. Last year alone, Etihad Cargo’s SkyStables shipped more than 2,500 horses around the world.”
The Longines Masters horses were transported on a B777 freighter equipped with a specially designed ventilation structure and temperature control system, two vital components when transporting horses. It is also equipped with IATA-approved horse ‘air stalls’. Designed with non-slip floors which are covered with absorbent materials, the stalls are stocked with hay and water for the horses to remain fed and hydrated throughout the flight.
A team of professional grooms and veterinarians handled the horses during loading and throughout the duration of the flight – when they regularly visited the horses to ensure they were comfortable and calm.
Etihad Cargo operates a fleet of five wide-body B777 freighters which can be configured to carry up to 75 horses and nine grooms at a time.