Irish bookmaker Paddy Power has unveiled its yearly Cheltenham marketing campaign stunt by placing a jockey on the back of a giant chalk horse. Paddy’s latest masterstroke adorns the 3,000-year old Uffington Horse in rural Oxfordshire – which is on the route to the festival site. A jockey sits atop the 374ft figure and a spokesperson for Paddy revealed it was a customer that came up with the idea.
“He was responding to our We Hear You campaign asking if we had any mischief planned for Cheltenham in the wake of our giant Hollywood sign a few years ago.
“We simply couldn’t resist the challenge and had to dig really deep to come up with something to literally measure up to the giant sign. I think we’ve achieved this.”
It comes after the “PADDYwood” sign in 2010 and the bookmaker has made a sizeable donation to the National Trust for this year’s stunt.
Exchange operator Betfair will release its Cheltenham promotions on Monday via their mobile site. A Tweet from BetfairRacing revealed: “Just signed off our promotions for Chelt [sic] week. Big reveal on Monday morning. Make sure you’ve got Befair [sic] Mobile installed on your phone!”
British racecourses are donating thousands of tickets to military personnel. Next week’s Cheltenham Festival marks the continuation of racing’s support for charity Tickets For Troops. Cheltenham Racecourse started off the initiative with tickets for the festival’s first three days and in all 78,000 tickets are being donated to service men and women. The festival draws an annual attendance of 200,000 with around £600 million for the entirety of the four days.