Sandown Park Racecourse today announces that bet365 have renewed their sponsorship of the Jump Finale fixture. This features the Grade 1 bet365 Celebration Chase and the bet365 Gold Cup and will this year be held on Saturday 28th April.
This is a three year deal, that runs up to and including 2020. bet365 first sponsored the Gold Cup at Sandown Park in 2008, making this the eleventh year of their sponsorship.
bet365 Jump Finale marks the final day of the jump season and sees the Champions of the season celebrated and presented with their trophies. This day is the richest day of Jump racing at Sandown Park, it will be worth £560,000 in 2018, up from £485,000 last year. On this day Sandown Park will run the inaugural £100,000 bet365 Novices’ Championship Handicap Hurdle Final. Run over 2 miles and worth £100,000 this race is the final for the Novices’ Championship Hurdle Series.
This year will see the bet365 Oaksey Chase run for the Menorah Challenge Trophy for the first time. The trophy has been commissioned by Sandown Park to celebrate the achievements of the much-loved Menorah, who won every running of the race since its inception in 2014. Owners, Graham and Diana Whateley announced their gelding’s retirement at last year’s Jump Finale after winning the bet365 Oaksey Chase for a fourth consecutive time. This year could see the nine-time Grade 1 winner Cue Card line up in the race. Earlier this week his owner Jean Bishop said they hope to make the bet365 Oaksey Chase Cue Card’s final appearance on a racecourse before his retirement.
The agreement with bet365 also sees them sponsor the Classic Trial Day on Friday 27th April. This features three Group races, including the Group 3 bet365 Classic Trial, run over 1m 2f for three-year-olds. Also on this seven race card is the bet365 Mile, a Group 2 that trainer Richard Hannon has won seven times since 2004. Trainer William Haggas suggested this race is an early target for recent Lincoln winner Addeybb. This day is also host to the Group 3 bet365 Gordon Richards Stakes, won by Ulysses last year, who went on to win the Group 1 Coral-Eclipse later that summer.
Phil White, London Regional Director for Jockey Club Racecourses, said:
“We are delighted to announce that bet365 will to sponsor Classic Trial Day and Jump Finale at Sandown Park for another three years. This year will mark the 11th year of their sponsorship of the meeting and we thank them for their continued support and enthusiasm.
“For the first time the bet365 Oaksey Chase will be run for the Menorah Challenge Trophy. We feel this perpetual trophy is an appropriate way to honour the only winner we have ever seen of this race. Menorah has added some real sparkle to the day over the last four years and we wish him continued health in his retirement.
“This fixture has gone from strength to strength since its introduction as the official end of the jump season in 2000. We have seen this rewarded in the calibre of races that are run, the bet365 Celebration Chase has been upgraded from Grade 2 to Grade 1 (2013/14 season), the bet365 Oaksey Chase upgraded from Listed to Grade 2 (2015/16 season) and the bet365 Select Hurdle from Listed to Grade 2 (2016/17 season). We look forward to building on the event with bet365 until at least 2020.”
Steve Ibberson of bet365 said:
“We have really enjoyed our relationship with Sandown Park sponsoring the Classic Trial Day and Jump Finale and are pleased to have agreed an extension of the partnership. With the chance of seeing Addeybb on the Friday and Cue Card along with other champions from this jump season on the Saturday this is set to be a fabulous two days of racing.”
This year’s Classic Trial Day and Jump Finale will be held on Friday 27th April and Saturday 28th April. Tickets are available here
About Sandown Park:
Sandown Park Racecourse is part of The Jockey Club, which stages thrilling sporting occasions including The Randox Health Grand National, The Cheltenham Festival and The Investec Derby. Millions of people every year enjoy the special experiences we offer through racing, music, food and entertainment. Governed by Royal Charter, every penny we make goes back into British Racing to help the sport thrive. We were founded in 1750 and today we are the largest commercial group in Britain’s second-biggest spectator sport, operating 15 racecourses nationwide, The National Stud, Jockey Club Estates, Jockey Club Catering, Jockey Club Live and our charity, Racing Welfare. For more information visit www.thejockeyclub.co.uk.
In December 2017 The Jockey Club announced it will increase its prize money contribution across its racecourse group by a record £4.2 million in 2018 to see it contribute a record £27.1 million to prize money from its own resources, subject to abandonments, and spread across all levels of the sport. Total race values offered across The Jockey Club’s 15 UK racecourses are set to exceed £53 million, a new record and an increase of £8 million year-on-year. The Jockey Club’s 348 racing fixtures scheduled for 2018 will offer, on average, record total race values of £153,000 per fixture. This compares to the average prize money per fixture of c£86,000 at fixtures run outside Jockey Club Racecourses in 2017. The increase also demonstrates The Jockey Club’s commitment to supporting all levels of the sport, with significant investment into grassroots racing, where race values will be increased by more than a third. From 2018 every JCR fixture will offer at least £40,000 in total race values, every Sunday fixture run will offer at least £65,000 in total race values, every fixture will include at least one race worth £10,000 or more and 83% of the group’s fixtures will have at least two per fixture, up from 58% in 2017.
For more information, please contact Tessa Day: Tessa.firstname.lastname@example.org / 07342 058877.
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