Bicton Arena has announced that Empire Coachbuilders, a firm of horsebox manufacturers based in Worcestershire, are the new title sponsors of its two international horse trials next year.
The Devon venue will stage two CIC, or international, competitions in 2015, the first in April and the second in August with another affiliated event taking place in July. The new sponsorship deal means there is a substantial prize fund for the CIC two star classes.
Arena manager Helen West said: “This is wonderful news as we are now able to offer prize money that is very much worth winning and we hope it will encourage people to come to Devon to compete.
“We are absolutely delighted that such a high profile company is our new title sponsor. We are very much looking forward to working with the team at Empire Coachbuilders.”
Empire Coachbuilders are renowned among the equestrian population with several high profile riders choosing their vehicles including Australian Olympic team members Paul Tapner and Sam Griffiths and British dressage rider Michael Eilberg.
Sales director James Trevatt, who used to event as an amateur, said: “Although Bicton is located in the Devon, which is several miles from our base in Worcestershire, many riders compete there, including some of the top competitors in the sport and we felt it was the perfect shop window for our lorries.
“I’ve ridden there myself and it’s a stunning location which really lends itself to sponsorship and we are very excited about our new association.
“I’ve also known Helen for a very long time and she is doing such a tremendous job putting Bicton on the map as a premier competition venue that we are delighted to be involved.”
Helen West took over as arena manager at Bicton in 2012 and since then she has implemented several changes including running three British Eventing competitions and two of which now have international status.
She said: “Next year is a very exciting year for us. All our competitions are moving up a level, but at the same time we are also ensuring we cater for the grass roots riders, hence the new competition in July when we will run up to BE100 level.”