Sponsoring a horse race

On this morning’s Today programme the daily horse racing tips alerted me to there being a race meeting at Epsom today. As I had a dentist appointment this morning in Epsom I thought I’d check out the race timings to see if I was likely to come up against traffic problems. I needn’t have worried as the race meeting was in the evening.

However what caught my eye amongst the list of races was the 7:20pm race, which had the name “Janet & Terry’s 50th Anniversary Handicap”. What a strange name for a race! Looking at other courses I came across this motley collection of race names:

  • Wessex Garages All New Nissan Qashqai Apprentice Handicap
  • Zest Recycle Supporting Chepstow Racecourse Fillies’ Handicap
  • Racing TV HD On Sky 426 Novice Median Auction Stakes
  • Leicester Racecourse Ideal Civil Ceremony Venue Selling Stakes
  • Get Hugh Taylor’s Tips On attheraces.com Novices’ Hurdle

On the Thirsk Racecourse website I found this to explain a bit about sponsorship and the naming of races:

Race sponsorship is widely recognised as a unique, innovative and highly effective method of brand promotion and advertising and is also becoming more and more popular with families and friends, as an exciting and memorable way to mark a special occasion, such as a birthday, anniversary, reunion or team day out.

Sponsors are encouraged to join us in the Parade Ring to judge the ‘Best Turned Out Horse’ before the race and present the cash prize to the groom responsible for looking after the chosen horse. Then after the race you will be invited to present a trophy to the winning owner in the Winners Enclosure, making for a great photo opportunity, followed by celebrations with the winning connections. This all makes for a fun and memorable day for everyone involved.

At the Thirsk Racecourse a private sponsorship package costs £500 (+VAT), and if you’re interested in what you get for your money, all is explained here.

I’ve learnt something new today, and potentially found a way to make the next key date in my life one to be remembered!

The old horse & the ladybird

I took my very heavy DSLR camera on my walk today, to see if I could cope with the cumbersomeness of it and to see if the pictures were better than my little Sony. I’m very disappointed with the pictures but these two are OKish. The camera is very cumbersome so I think I’ll stick to my Sony, though I might have a go taking the DSLR out with the telephoto lens to see if I can get something interesting.

Box Hill cattle poo

The fairly short but steep walk up Box Hill in Surrey is a popular walk, but I’m not sure it will remain so. There was a large amount of cattle dung on the face of the hill, which is where most people walk. We caught a glimpse of the cattle and it was hard to believe that just seven creatures could excrete so much! My guess is that there are ecological reasons for introducing the animals to this space, but I can’t say I’m a fan.

My wife noted the unreassuring use of the word “often” in the poster sentence “They have a gentle, placid nature often ignoring walkers and dogs”.

At the races

I’ve lived close to Epsom racecourse for a very long time but I think this was only my 2nd or 3rd visit to a race meeting. This was just a small event and my visit was brief.