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In a positive move for the sport as a whole, two of Britain’s major events have recently announced sponsorship agreements with brands that are new to the sport.

The Barbury Castle CIC*** International Horse Trials, which is a new event for 2005, will be sponsored by Maybach, the luxury limousine brand of DaimlerChrysler. The event takes place on Sunday 10 July near Marlborough and will be known as the “Maybach Barbury International Horse Trials”.

“As one of the world’s most distinguished and exclusive car brands, Maybach shares the aspiration and passion of the world’s top event riders and owners. We are proud to be associated with this innovative new event at the top of its class,” says Kevin Turnbull, project director for Maybach and Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren.

Although the sponsorship sees Maybach move into eventing for the first time, it already has partnerships in racing and polo through Highclere Thoroughbred Racing and the winning Maybach team at The 21st Cartier World Cup on Snow in St Moritz this February.

“We are delighted to welcome Maybach as our title sponsor,” says Barbury Castle Horse Trials Chairman, Nigel Bunter. “Maybach and Barbury Castle are both new to eventing but we share a rich heritage and a commitment to be the very best. We look forward to a successful association.”

The Burnham Market World Cup Horse Trials (8 – 10 April) has also announced a new title sponsor with local metal recycling specialists, Easco Ltd.

Easco Ltd managing director, Andre Serruys, says: “We are delighted to be linked with this major local event, and will do all we can to support, promote and expand what is already a major event in the international eventing calendar.”

The company is a leading light in the world of recycling, and Serruys is keen to promote understanding of his industry among the public, saying: “By supporting the environment we enable competitors and visitors to Burnham Market to appreciate events such as this, and we hope to generate interest in the key issues of this area of global recycling.”

In comparison to Burnham Market and Barbury Castle, Gatcombe’s Festival of British Eventing (5-7 August) is approaching the sponsorship of its intermediate championship in a rather unusual way, offering one company the title sponsorship as top prize in a unique competition.

The event is inviting interested companies to summarise how they would utilise this opportunity. The aim of the competition is “to show potential companies what they can get out of sponsoring an event like Gatcombe,” according to a spokesman. “We want to get firms to think about other ways in which to benefit from sponsorship other than having their name on ringside banners and so on.”

A shortlist will be compiled after entries close on 18 April, after which the winning company will receive sponsorship of the intermediate championship totally free of charge. For details of how to enter, contact Andrew Tucker (tel: 01666 505574), e-mail: atucker@onside.fsbusiness.co.uk or download from www.gatcombe-horse.co.uk

Box offices for all three of these events are now open. For more details and tickets:

  • Gatcombe (tel: 0870 609 8013) or www.gatcombe-horse.co.uk
  • Easco Burnham Market (tel: 08707 879985)
  • Maybach International Horse Trials (tel: 0870 609 8014) or www.barburyhorsetrials.co.uk