Goodwood's Magnolia Cup lands new sponsorship deal

Goodwood Racecourse has announed a sponsor partner for the Magnolia Cup ladies' charity race at the Qatar Goodwood Festival for the next three years.

Some of the riders from the 2019 Magnolia Cup - with winner Khadijah Mellah in the centre
Some of the riders from the 2019 Magnolia Cup - with winner Khadijah Mellah in the centre

The new three-year partnership with Markel sees exclusive ownership and naming rights of the prestigious horse race on Ladies Day through to 2023.

As official partner of the Qatar Goodwood Festival, Markel, the global insurer, will aim to raise awareness of its commitment to creating a more diverse and inclusive organisation, along with building upon its long-standing promise to support the communities it serves.

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The 2021 renewal will mark the tenth running of the race which since its inception has raised over £1.6m for multiple charities. A maximum field of 12 intrepid riders’ line up in the contest run over five-and-a-half furlongs of Goodwood Racecourse’s home straight.

In recent years, individuals from the world of business, music, sport and media have all participated, however, it was the victory of Khadijah Mellah in 2019 that captured headlines around the world. The Magnolia Cup was created with the intention to push the boundaries of human capabilities and diversify horseracing while creating an inclusive community in support of women and their wellbeing.

William Stovin, president of Markel International, said: “Markel has enjoyed a long-standing relationship with Goodwood and we have watched the Magnolia Cup go from strength to strength. The values that the Magnolia Cup is built upon mirror the values that we hold as an organisation, so this partnership seemed like a natural evolution of our relationship with Goodwood.

“We hope that across the next three years we can raise awareness of the importance of diversity and inclusion across all industries and the opportunities that it presents, along with being able to support some very worthy causes.”

Jon Barnett, racecourse director at the Goodwood Group,said: “To work with Markel over the next three years is something our whole team can’t wait to deliver. I believe this partnership with a brand of provenance like Markel will provide big opportunities for both parties and British horseracing.

“Markel has done a great deal of work to address the diversity and inclusion challenges that face the organisation and the wider insurance industry as well as looking at how it can make a more positive impact on the various communities that it is a part of and so with this alliance we can look forward to driving the importance of these messages in our sport.”

The supported charity and riders for the 2021 renewal of the Magnolia Cup are due to be announced shortly alongside the designer of the jockey silks. Tickets, dining and hospitality for the Qatar Goodwood Festival are on sale, and can be purchased by visiting or by calling 01243 755055.