A new 1.50 m show jumping series sponsored by Renault will take place at nine of the largest county shows this summer. Each class will offer a £7,500 prize fund and the highest placed horse/rider combination at the end of the series will be awarded a new Renault worth £16,000.

“County shows provide the perfect platform to showcase our sport,” said Maria Clayton, head of sponsorship for the BSJA.

Commencing in May at Devon County, the series will progress through the summer at Bath & West, South of England, Royal Norfolk, Kent County, Royal Lancashire, New Forest & Hampshire and Pembrokeshire before finishing at Royal Berkshire in September. The BSJA expects to see most of Britain’s top show jumpers entering the series. Jumps will stand at 1.50 m and competitors will parade at the beginning of the class.

“Up until now there hadn’t been a 1.50m series at county shows,” said Clayton. “It is only when you stand next to these fences that you realise how big they are.”

“Renault UK already has a substantial presence across the county show circuit and we were keen to find a way that we could proactively align ourselves with British show jumping, a sport whose heritage is deep rooted across the county shows and their spectators” explained a Renault UK spokesperson. “This sponsorship is perfectly in-keeping with Renault UK’s ‘everything is sport’ vision, which will be the focus for 2007.”

Show jumping has been enjoying increased popularity in Britain over the last year and the new series will ensure top level competition is experienced at the county shows.

“The vision, support and investment made by Renault UK has also allowed us to meet one of our primary objectives which was to support the county shows by bringing a sponsored series forward for them,” said Clayton.

Tim Stockdale, chairman of marketing at British Show Jumping said: “This is great news for our sport and the alignment with Renault UK fits beautifully with us. The sponsorship is one that will allow us to identify and develop talented young riders – something that can only bode well towards our success at future Championships and hopefully the Olympic Games”.