The Epsom Derby is planning to relaunch the race as an international sporting event as part of an overhaul of the event’s sponsorship deal. Its 13-year deal with Vodafone ended earlier this year.
Epsom Downs Racecourse is seeking an international brand to replace the mobile phone operator in a bid a raise the event’s profile worldwide. It is hoped the plans will move the race away from its reputation as a corporate hospitality event.
Stephen Wallis, Epsom managing director, says he wants to develop the sponsorship away from being a race specific event. A new deal is expected to include a TV show as well as naming rights to boost the Derby’s appeal all year round. The deal is worth an estimated £11m over three years.
The racecourse has had talks with several brands, thought to include Emirates, about taking over the sponsorship. The race has had just two partners in 20 years, Vodaphone, and battery brand, Eveready.