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Magnolia Cup riders Khadijah Mellah 21 April 2021

Markel to sponsor Goodwood’s prestigious Magnolia Cup for the next three years

Goodwood Racecourse has announced global insurer Markel as a new partner of the Magnolia Cup at the Qatar Goodwood Festival for the next three years. The new partnership sees exclusive ownership and naming rights of the prestigious horse race on Ladies Day through to 2023.

As official partner of the Qatar Goodwood Festival, Markel will aim to raise awareness of its commitment to creating a more diverse and inclusive organisation, along with building upon its long-standing promise to support the communities it serves.

The 2021 renewal will mark the tenth running of the race which since its inception has raised over £1.6 million for multiple charities. A maximum field of 12 intrepid riders line-up in the contest run over five-and-a-half furlongs of Goodwood Racecourse’s home straight. In recent years, women from the world of business, music, sport and media have all participated, however, it was the victory of Khadijah Mellah in 2019 that captured headlines around the world.

The Magnolia Cup was created with the intention to push the boundaries of human capabilities and diversify horseracing while creating an inclusive community in support of women and their wellbeing. Commenting on the sponsorship, William Stovin, president of Markel International, said: “Markel has enjoyed a longstanding relationship with Goodwood and we have watched the Magnolia Cup go from strength to strength. The values that the Magnolia Cup is built upon mirror the values that we hold as an organisation, so this partnership seemed like a natural evolution of our relationship with Goodwood.”

He added: “We hope that across the next three years we can raise awareness of the importance of diversity and inclusion across all industries and the opportunities that it presents, along with being able to support some very worthy causes.”

Jon Barnett, Racecourse Director at The Goodwood Group, commented: “I believe this partnership with a brand of provenance like Markel will provide big opportunities for both parties and British horseracing.

“Markel has done a great deal of work to address the diversity and inclusion challenges that face the organisation and the wider insurance industry, as well as looking at how it can make a more positive impact on the various communities that it is a part of and so with this alliance we can look forward to driving the importance of these messages in our sport.”

The riders and the nominated charity for the 2021 renewal of the Magnolia Cup are due to be announced shortly alongside the designer of the jockey silks.

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