Monday 18 December 2017

€1 million prize boost in Derby sponsorship

Yesterday it was announced that Ireland’s largest independently-owned bookmaking firm is to extend the Derby sponsorship by a further three years. Photo: Conor Healy Photography
Yesterday it was announced that Ireland’s largest independently-owned bookmaking firm is to extend the Derby sponsorship by a further three years. Photo: Conor Healy Photography
Michael Fortune

Michael Fortune

There were multiple good news stories for the Irish Greyhound Industry yesterday with the confirmation that BoyleSports will continue their sponsorship of the Irish Greyhound Derby for another three years and will also greatly increase their portfolio of sponsorship within the sport.

The BoyleSports sponsorship of the Derby began in 2014 and that initial three-year deal completed its term last September when Rural Hawaii raced to victory in the final at Shelbourne.

But yesterday it was announced at a luncheon in Shelbourne that Ireland's largest independently-owned bookmaking firm is to extend the Derby sponsorship by a further three years while also taking over the sponsorship of the Champion Stakes and a host of other races during the year.

BoyleSports previously supported the Champion Stakes in their pre-Derby days and they will again be at the helm for this valuable pre-Derby event. In addition, they have already agreed to sponsor a series of 12 minor sweepstakes and some 40 one-off Getting Out Races during the year.

Irish Greyhound Board chairman Phil Meaney and new Interim CEO Dr Sean Brady warmly greeted the new commitment from BoyleSports.

The new deal guarantees a €1 million prize-money package over the three years with the prize-money for the Derby being significantly increased. The winner will receive €150,000 and prize-money right down the line will be substantially increased. The dog finishing last in the final will earn €9,000.

Andrew Doyle, Minister of State at the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine, expressed his delight at the news and welcomed the fact that the sponsorship will find its way through all levels of the sport. The 12 sweepstakes will cater for a variety of grades and distances.

The BoyleSports Irish Derby will have a slightly later date this year which means the final will not now coincide with the All-Ireland football weekend.

The first round will be run on Thursday, August 17 with the final on Saturday, September 23. This new date has been warmly greeted as it will make it easier for the thousands of visitors to access accommodation in the city on the weekend of the decider.

Irish Independent

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