After running without a title sponsor in 2013 the Hickstead Derby has secured a new partner for 2014 — Equestrian.com, with support from H&H as media partner.

More than £100,000 was needed to safeguard the Derby’s future — the prize-fund this year is £115,000, up from £111,000.

The Derby was sponsored most recently by Carpetright, founded by Lord Harris, joint owner of Scott Brash’s Olympic ride Hello Sanctos.

The company pulled out in October 2012, after two years, to enable Lord Harris to concentrate on ownership.

Hickstead’s Lizzie Bunn said: “We had a big challenge ahead of us at the end of 2012 when the previous sponsorship ended and there were only a few months to find a new one.

“We’re obviously delighted that a major equestrian brand has chosen to support our most famous class.”

The iconic showjumping event was first held in 1961 and features famous obstacles, including the Devil’s Dyke and the 10ft drop off the Derby Bank.

Equestrian.com — an online equestrian clothing and supplies business — also becomes title sponsor of the 5-day show and is launching an online Hickstead Derby community.

Members — who join by buying a polo shirt for £50 — will have access to a range of benefits and prizes.

“We want as many people as possible to feel a part of the Hickstead Derby, which is such a fantastic and thrilling event,” said Lorraine Meadowcroft of Equestrian.com. AM

 ➤ The Equestrian.com Hickstead Derby runs on Sunday 29 June. For tickets or to join the Hickstead Derby Community, visit www.hickstead.co.uk