|Online Poker Site bets $1 million for title sponsorship. Other potential sponsors who were vying for the title sponsorship the historic 2004 Guineas Festival races in Newmarket, England said there was no connection between online poker and famous horse races.|
However, UltimateBet.com in a bid to increase market share in a rapidly expanding online poker market in Europe, is betting on it on the races to boost its presence. Considered the horse racing's grand slam The UltimateBet.com Guineas 1000, 2000, and Jockey Club Stakes will be held at the Newmarket Racecourse on May 1st and 2nd, 2004, expected to be attended by the Queen of England.
The 3-year old UltimateBet.com is a privately held company, licensed and regulated by the Kahnawake Gaming Commission in the Mohawk Territory of Kahnawake, Canada.
'Our sponsorship of the Guineas Festival at Newmarket is an exciting opportunity that opens many doors,' says Arthur Thomas, Chairman of the Board for UltimateBet.com. He believes by sponsoring such a leading horse racing event, it will attract people who expect a high level of professionalism and class, which according to him are the same traits shared by poker enthusiasts.
While, the correlation might seem far-fetched to some, the sponsorship gives most title sponsors a strong, visual presence in two of the five elite horse races held each year in England. The 200-year old Guineas is steeped in tradition, and traces back to the days King Charles II. With the Guineas Festival being the first premier race of the season, it is expected to set the stage for other European racing circles.
The first Classics of the season will be known as the UltimateBet.com 2000 Guineas and the UtimateBet.com 1000 Guineas. The new-look meeting on May 1 and 2 will also feature the UltimateBet.com Jockey Club Stakes as the new sponsor looks to increase its market share in the United Kingdom. The contract for the sponsorship with Ultimatebet.com is for an initial one-year period.