The racing manager of the mainland's only major racecourse has denied reports in British newspapers that 600 horses were culled as part of cost-cutting efforts. 'We've killed 110 horses, which is a normal cull at the end of the season. They were mostly injured horses, retired horses, young foals with no commercial future, barren mares,' said Kevin Connolly, racing manager of the Tongshun racecourse. 'They were killed by humane lethal injection. We did not kill 600 horses,' said Connolly. Tongshun was opened in 2002 by Hong Kong tycoon YP Cheng, who reportedly has invested nearly $800 million in the project in the expectation that China would legalise gambling. But there has been little movement on freeing up the gambling laws, despite a flourishing illegal betting trade, and racing was stopped last month at Tongshun. 'The course hasn't closed. We've stopped racing for winter, but we'll continue to operate so that we're ready for if and when the Chinese government allows racing in China,' he said. British newspapers reported the track had been shut and a quarter of the 2,400 horses had been culled as part of efforts to save costs, angering animal rights' activists, and that the track had been closed. Connolly said there had been staff cutbacks because the racecourse needed lower operating costs. And he still believes gambling will be legalised in China. Connolly said it was yet to be decided if they would have a programme of racing next season. 'We still have 2,400 horses on the property. Half of them are of racing age and we still have a big operation here,' said Connolly.