National breaks £1 million barrier

New National sponsor
New National sponsor
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Aintree’s search for a new sponsor for the Grand National is over with the news that Crabbies has signed a three-year deal which will see the race serve up £1million in prize money for the first time.

Since John Smith’s announced they would not be renewing their nine-year association with the race after the 2013 renewal, won by Auroras Encore, Aintree and its owner the Jockey Club have been searching for a new backer.

Crabbies has its own unique link to the race as it is part of Halwood International, a company founded by John Halewood who won the 2004 Grand National with the Ginger McCain-trained Amberleigh House.

Halewood died in 2011.

Crabbies, who specialise in making alcoholic ginger beer, have sponsored races at a lower level for some time and also sponsor the Scottish football club Hibernian.

The new deal sees the Crabbies name attached to the three races run over the National fences; the Crabbie’s Fox Hunters’ Chase, the Crabbie’s Topham Chase and the Crabbie’s Grand National.

John Baker, regional director of Aintree and the North West for Jockey Club Racecourses, said: “We’re thrilled to welcome Crabbie’s as the title sponsor of the world’s most famous steeplechase.

“Crabbie’s has shown itself to be one of the most exciting, fun and relevant brands in the UK.