Cliff Stud backing the Hunt Cup at Thirsk

Sponsor: Paul Sutherland, left, with Thirsk Racecourse's James Sanderson.
Sponsor: Paul Sutherland, left, with Thirsk Racecourse's James Sanderson.
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A stud farm, once owned by horse racing legend Sir Henry Cecil, has signed a three-year sponsorship deal with Thirsk Racecourse to back its most prestigious race, the Thirsk Hunt Cup, until at least 2021.

Helmsley-based Cliff Stud specialises in foaling and with its paddocks and accommodation it can accommodate up to 65 horses at any one time.

Cliff Stud was acquired by Paul Sutherland in 2017.

He said: “Thirsk Racecourse and Cliff Stud both have a deep-rooted history in horse racing.

“The Hambleton district and surrounding area has an incredible racing heritage, with many thriving training yards. At Cliff Stud we place owners and trainers at the heart of our business and we are very proud to be sponsoring a local, historic and high-profile race such as the Thirsk Hunt Cup.”

The Thirsk Hunt Cup began in 1859, with the intention of bringing together the country’s leading hunters.

These days the race is a very competitive flat, handicap contest over a distance of one mile.

James Sanderson, clerk of the course at Thirsk Racecourse, said: “The Thirsk Hunt Cup is Thirsk Racecourse’s most famous race and so we are thrilled that Cliff Stud, a venue equally synonymous with Yorkshire racing, will be sponsoring the race for the next three years.

“With their generous support, we will see the race’s prize money grow to at least £50,000 by 2021.”