From the home of National Hunt racing to the home of the Derby, applications are invited for the second Pertemps Champions Willberry Charity Race in August 2018
Members of the equestrian public are invited to apply to ride in the Pertemps Champions Willberry Charity Derby, a flat race to be run over the Derby course and distance on August 27th (Bank Holiday Monday) 2018. The race will again be run in aid of The Bob Champion Cancer Trust and Hannah's Willberry Wonder Pony Charity.
Cousins Lissa Green, one of Britain's most exciting new eventing talents and daughter of two-time European Eventing Champion and Olympic Silver medallist Lucinda Green MBE, and Lara Prior-Palmer, winner of the 2013 Mongol Derby, are set to head the 12-strong line-up. Their entry is particularly poignant as Lara has herself been battling Hodgkin's lymphoma in 2017. They will be joined by two other celebrity riders and eight lucky members of the public.
The inaugural Pertemps Champions Derby Charity Race, held at Cheltenham, the home of National Hunt racing in April 2017, raised over £120,000 divided equally between the two benefiting charities. The line-up included eventing legends, Sir Mark Todd, Tina Cook and Ben Hobday as well as TV presenter, Alice Fox-Pitt. It was won by soldier Ben Moore, himself a cancer victim and particularly special to him and his family as his daughter is currently fighting the disease.
Bob Champion says:
"The Cheltenham race was such a success and we're absolutely delighted to now be going to Epsom, home of the greatest flat race in the world. With over 600 applicants applying to ride in last year's race and with so much support for both charities, I'm sure we'll have another amazing line-up. I would quite like a Grand Prix dressage rider to take their place alongside our celebrity eventers this time - so come on and apply!"
It was Hannah Francis's wish to have a charity race for her Willberry Wonder Pony Charity, expressed before she sadly died in August 2016. Her inspirational legacy lives on in the race.
Ian Peters, Trustee of Hannah's Willberry Wonder Pony Charity says:
"We were delighted to participate with The Bob Champion Cancer Trust in the first running of the race at Cheltenham in 2017. Doing so again, this time at Epsom, will be another tremendous opportunity to create a unique event and raise meaningful funds for both charities. Hannah would have been astonished to see her charity featuring in such a high-profile race and we're all thrilled to be taking part."
Simon Durrant, General Manager at Epsom Downs Racecourse says:
"We are delighted to host the Pertemps Champions Willberry Charity Derby race at Epsom Downs Racecourse. Run over the Derby course and distance, this is a once in a lifetime opportunity for these riders to experience the unique contours and undulations of the world-famous Epsom Downs. The Investec Derby is the greatest flat race in the world, the richest horserace in Britain and impacts the global horseracing industry. It is highly competitive and attracts some of the best thoroughbreds and jockeys in Europe every June. We give jump jockeys, apprentice jockeys and amateur riders the chance to experience the race in their own Derby's throughout the season and this race offers an exciting new aspect. We look forward to seeing the final line-up of riders, who will be raising money for these two worthy causes."