Owners of Point-to-Point horses have long acknowledged that they are not running for the money, given the ceiling on prize money set by the British Horseracing Board for this most amateur of amateur sports.
However, entrants for the sport’s most valuable fixture of the Spring look set to pick up on a host of other benefits and initiatives that will help offset the cost of training and running a horse, courtesy of two innovative sponsor agreements at Andoversford Races.
Andoversford has set the pace in recent seasons on rewards for those that put on the sport – owners, trainers and riders. The fixture, this year on Sunday April 7th, features the most valuable racing programme of the Spring, built around the Robert Hitchins Group Andoversford Grand Annual Chase, a race originally run across part of the same course back in 1834.
Now, sponsors Brewin Dolphin, the eponymous wealth manager, has underwritten an exclusive area for owners – the Brewin Dolphin Owners Lounge, where those with runners can unwind or celebrate during the course of the day with light refreshments or a sharp brandy to calm the nerves.
In addition, Brewin Dolphin will support a Leading Trainer Award for the Keeper accruing most points from runners during the day. With a range of scoring from 10points for a winner to 1 point for a runner, this will offer added incentive to run horses at this most prestigious meeting. The award offers a cash prize of £250.
This award adds to the Dubarry Outstanding Performance Award, which will offer a £500 voucher to spend at the eponymous brand’s Cheltenham store to the owner, keeper or rider putting up the outstanding performance of the day.
And notwithstanding these two initiatives, owners declaring to run and coming under orders in the two open races, each worth £1,000, will be refunded their entry money, effectively running for free.
Paul Nurden, Divisional Director for Brewin Dolphin, remarked,”This meeting goes from strength to strength in an area where racing tops the sporting agenda. The meeting has justly earned a reputation for producing good quality horses that progress into the mainstream of professional racing. Just as good wealth management needs constant nurture, we believe that looking after owners of horses only encourages them to greater endeavour and we’re pleased to support Andoversford’s initiatives.”
Peter McNeile, for Andoversford Races, added, “Andoversford has carved out a unique place in the county’s racing calendar. Cotswold folk love their racing and love Andoversford too, and we hope owners will respond with alacrity to this terrific set of measures to make their day special.”