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Badminton secures renewed Mitsubishi support

January 7, 2012

Sponsorship of Britain's famous Badminton Horse Trials has been extended by Mitsubishi Motors up to and including 2015.

Mark Todd and Land Vision after winning Badminton in 2011.

Mitsubishi's support of Badminton started in 1992 and it has become one of the longest sponsorships in sport.

Badminton 2012 will be significant as a last chance for many international team managers to see their riders perform at a top 4 star event before heading to the London 2012 Olympics at Greenwich in the summer. It is also a reminder that it was at the last London Olympics in 1948 that the 10th Duke of Beaufort, after watching a lacklustre performance by the British eventing team, offered Badminton Park as a venue for an annual Olympic format event. In 1949 the first ever Badminton was run.

Event Director Hugh Thomas said the renewal took Mitsubishi's involvement with Badminton to 24 years. "Wwe look forward to a secure future in these challenging economic times."

Lance Bradley, Mitsubishi Motors in the UK's Managing Director, said that even in difficult times for the UK motor industry and the world economy, Mitsubishi's commitment to equestrianism and especially three-day eventing was as strong as ever.

"We are proud to pledge our ongoing support to all those who take part in the sport, whether riders, support staff, friends or families. This new agreement underlines our commitment to every level of the sport by including the Mitsubishi Motors Grassroots Championship as well as the main Mitsubishi Motors Badminton Horse Trials itself."

This year the International Trials run from Friday to Monday, May 4 to 7, with the cross-country taking place on the Sunday and the climax on Bank Holiday Monday for a record first prize of £65,000, a fitting reward for the world's premier Three Day Event.

Badminton is part of both the Rolex Grand Slam of Eventing and the HSBC FEI Classics Series, the two combinations of top events that unite the sport throughout the year.

William Fox-Pitt as the current Burghley Champion is the man to watch for the Rolex Grand Slam, while Mary King will be keen to win the Classics Series again and was indeed the leading rider in the HSBC Rider Rankings at the end of the 2011 season.

Reflecting the excitement of a home Olympics, Badminton has decided to make its official 'cause' for 2012 Equestrian Team GBR, raising money for all the British teams taking part in Olympic, World and European Championships over the next four years.

Running just before the International event (Wednesday and Thursday, May 2-3) will be the Mitsubishi Motors Grassroots Championships, where qualified leisure riders get their chance to compete on the hallowed turf. Once again enthusiasm for this part of Badminton is huge, riders having qualified in autumn 2011 and now preparing for the most important days of their sporting life.

In addition, for the first time for many years, Badminton will host the first 2012 qualifying round for the Dubarry Burghley Young Event Horse Championships, which is a chance to see the potential stars of the future.



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