Olympia, The London International Horse Show is delighted to announce the highly anticipated return of the Markel Champions Challenge in aid of the Injured Jockeys Fund on the evening of Friday 16th December, which will feature high profile names such as the legendary Frankie Dettori and newly crowned National Hunt Champion, Richard Johnson.
The event, which sees some of the UK’s top jump jockeys test their mettle against their flat counterparts, made its debut at Olympia, The London International Horse Show back in 2014 and returns by popular demand for the second time in 2016.
Markel International, the specialist insurer, is proud to return as sponsor of the special class, which is set to be one of the highlights of the evening.
Captaining the flat team will be Frankie Dettori, a champion on the flat, who never fails to provide top class entertainment wherever he goes. Frankie will go head-to-head with 2015-2016 National Hunt Champion Richard ‘Dickie’ Johnson, stepping out of the shadows of Sir Anthony McCoy on the track and looking to fill ‘A.P.’s’ boots at Olympia too, following the success of the jumps team back in 2014.
The captains will select their teams over the coming months, with the final line-up set to be announced early in the autumn. Always highly competitive, there is no doubt that both Frankie and Richard will be looking to field the strongest teams available, as they lay down the gauntlet for the challenge. The class is sure to be a crowd pleaser and the fans may even be treated to one of Frankie’s infamous flying dismounts.
In addition to the entertainment value of the class, the Markel Champions Challenge is run in aid of the Injured Jockeys Fund, the charity which provides invaluable support for jockeys and the wider equestrian community.
Lisa Hancock, Chief Executive of the Injured Jockeys Fund, says:
“We are delighted to see the return of The Markel Champions Challenge in aid of the Injured Jockeys Fund. The 2014 event was a great success and helped raise awareness of the important work we do at the IJF in supporting injured jockeys and their families.”
Juliet Redfern, Markel’s Managing Director of equine and livestock, says:
“We are thrilled to be supporting this exciting event at Olympia for a second time and hope that it raises lots of money for the Injured Jockeys Fund, which is a truly fantastic charity.”
Simon Brooks-Ward, Olympia, The London International Horse Show Director, says:
“We are very pleased to announce the return of the Markel Champions Challenge in aid of the Injured Jockeys Fund. We are looking forward to seeing the top jockeys once again demonstrating their equine skills in the Olympia Exhibition Hall in an event which was one of the highlights of the 2014 Show. With the likes of Frankie Dettori and Richard Johnson involved this year, it is sure to be another great spectacle which will wow the audience.”
To buy your tickets to this fantastic event and secure your place at one of the equestrian performances of the year, please visit www.olympiahorseshow.com or telephone box office on 0871 230 5580.
Olympia, The London International Horse Show:
Gayle Telford, E: email@example.com or T: +44 (0)207 592 1207
Injured Jockeys Fund:
Liz Ampairee, E: firstname.lastname@example.org or T: +44 (0)773 333 1945
Michael Henman, E: email@example.com or T: +44 (0)207 953 6000
Olympia, The London International Horse Show
The first international horse show took place in the Olympia halls in 1907. Olympia, The London International Horse Show, the event we see today, was started by Raymond Brooks-Ward in 1971. This year’s show takes place on 13-19 December 2016 in the Olympia Exhibition Hall, located in West Kensington London. The show will play host to a packed timetable of all things equestrian and is expected to welcome over 90,000 visitors. It is regarded as one of Europe’s oldest and most prestigious equine competitions. The show mixes top class equestrian action, including FEI World Cup™ Jumping, Dressage and Driving with family entertainment, such as the Osborne Refrigerators Shetland Pony Grand National and The Kennel Club Dog Agility.
The Injured Jockeys Fund
The Injured Jockeys Fund was founded in 1964 following the devastating accidents to Tim Brookshaw, and then Paddy Farrell in the 1964 Grand National. In the 50 years since, The Fund has spent over £18m in helping over 1000 jockeys and their families. The IJF has two respite and rehabilitation centres, Oaksey House in Berkshire, opened by Patron HRH The Princess Royal in 2009, and Jack Berry House in Yorkshire, which opened in the Summer of 2015. A third facility in Newmarket is currently being planned. www.ijf.org.uk