Increased support from leading-brand companies is further endorsement of British point-to-pointing ahead of the new season which opens in November.
At a sponsors’ gathering and season’s launch at Cheltenham today it was revealed that Skinner’s Pet Foods, which has a network of stockists around the UK, is backing 22 ladies’ open races. That is an increase of two, culminating in a prestigious hunters’ chase final at Stratford in May. The first two home in the Goodman Nash Mixed Open at the Avon Vale will qualify for the Skinner's Final. Skinner’s is also sponsoring the national women riders’ title.
Frontline construction company JRL Group Ltd is ramping up its backing for the sport’s point-to-point Flat races, which have been increased in number from six to 10. The additional contests were a natural progression for a relatively new concept – of last year’s half-dozen races five were so popular they had to be run in divisions.
Leading horse feed manufacturer Connolly’s RED MILLS enters its twelfth year of sponsorship by supporting 14 intermediate races plus a hunters’ chase final at Cheltenham in May. The company also backs the champion horse award for the winning-most pointer, while its supplement brand, Foran Equine, sponsors the two trainers’ championships.
Leading managed IT and communications provider Timico returns with its lucrative series of mixed open races – each one worth £1,000 in total prize money – leading to a hunters’ chase final at Cheltenham worth £25,000, notable riches for the amateur sport. Fourteen races will lead up to the final, which will mark Timico’s third year of sponsorship.
Filly and mare owners are not short of opportunities for their horses. The Jockey Club sponsors a 19-race series for maiden fillies and mares, leading to the creation of a champion. She will collect double prize money on her first run at any Jockey Club-owned racecourse within three years of winning the award.
The Thoroughbred Breeders’ Association continues its 3-2-1 Bonus scheme for fillies and mares running in the trio of point-to-point bumpers run under Rules each spring. Bonuses of up to £3,000 can be won by fillies or mares in each race.
"This is great news for the sport," commented Peter McNeile, for the Avon Vale Races. "It demonstrates that the sport, and individual fixtures like the Avon Vale Races, hold a broa
d appeal to brands on a national as well as local scale. We're already talking to businesses large and small about our audience, and sitting in the midst of several significant business areas in Wiltshire, the Avon Vale Races represents great value and appeal in engaging a rich seam of affluent Wiltshire consumers. If you're in business in Wiltshire, this is a fun opportunity to immerse your business in the community it serves and hava lot of fun along the way! Book the dat now - Saturday March 30th 2019!"