Twelve Months of Giving with New Beginnings

January sees the launch of Pontefract Racecourse’s ‘Twelve Months of Giving’ for New Beginnings Horses – a charity who provide a safe and secure environment for former racehorses, where they can adjust and be re-trained for their second career following racing.

The Pontefract team at New Beginnings Horses
The Pontefract team at New Beginnings Horses

In 2023, Pontefract Racecourse announced that former racehorse and New Beginnings resident, Nearly Caught (affectionately known as Nico), was to become their first Racehorse Ambassador. Earning just under £350,000 in prize money, Nearly Caught was a strong stayer who competed over marathon trips all around Europe. During his career, Nearly Caught was no stranger to Pontefract either as he won the Phil Bull Trophy by an impressive 10 lengths in 2015 – his biggest winning margin throughout his esteemed career!

Nearly Caught parades at Pontefract
Nearly Caught parades at Pontefract

Ahead of the launch of the new campaign, Richard Hammill, Chief Operating Officer for Pontefract Racecourse, said:

‘We pride ourselves on providing the highest level of equine welfare at Pontefract when racehorses visit the track and were delighted to team up with New Beginnings and welcome Nico as our Racehorse Ambassador. It’s been a privilege getting to know Nico and all the team here absolutely adore him. Having visited the yard in 2023, we were all keen to be able to do as much as we possibly could to help New Beginnings and the horses in their care. Launching ‘The Twelve Months of Giving’ was a natural progression to help raise the visibility of the charity and to showcase the wonderful care that is given to thoroughbreds in the next stage of their career.’

Nico with Chief Operating Officer, Richard Hammill
Nico with Chief Operating Officer, Richard Hammill

The campaign will see a variety of fundraising activity for New Beginnings taking place in every month in 2024. There’ll be opportunities for racegoers to see Nico (and some of his friends) and the New Beginnings team on each of the Racecourse’s Family Race Days, while other events will include staff volunteering days, a visit to the yard for Pontefract Racecourse Annual Badge Holders, bucket collections, community visits to local schools and the Prince of Wales Hospice and even attending a Castleford Tigers match!

Pam and Kevin Atkinson of New Beginnings said:

‘We have been taking the horses to meet the racegoers at Pontefract for over 10 years and we really enjoy working with the whole team there. We’re thrilled to be part of their Twelve Months of Giving campaign. We see daily the powerful impact racehorses have on people lives and we are delighted to be partnering with Pontefract Racecourse on this initiative so more people can experience and learn what horses do for people, and people for horses. The campaign will hopefully help us to raise vital funds to be able to continue to care for these wonderful horses who give us so much joy.’

The Pontefract Groundsteam set to work

If you’d like to make a donation to New Beginnings Horses, please click here.

Click here for more information on Pontefract Racecourse and the Twelve Months of Giving.

For more information on New Beginnings Horses, please click here .