Having achieved the highest number of visitors of any sporting event held at the NEC in 2007, Grandstand Group, organiser of Horse of the Year Show and the British Open Show Jumping Championships, has been awarded “Sports Promoter of the Year” by the NEC who host both events annually.
This inaugural award was presented today to Grandstand Group Director, Mark Wein, and reflects the huge contribution the company has made to the sport of show jumping and equestrianism in the UK. The NEC selected Grandstand Group as their Sports Promoter of the Year in recognition of the continued success of their shows, including the extensive live TV coverage Horse of the Year Show receives, and the combined audience total of 77,000 that the events bring to the venue every year.
Grandstand Group Director Mark Wein receiving the NEC Sports Promoter of the Year award from Phil Mead Managing Director of NEC Group Arenas, Paul Thandi NEC Group Chief Executive & Guy Dunstan, General Manager NEC Group Arenas– a high resolution version of this image is available on request.
Grandstand Group successfully rescued one of the country’s flagship heritage events, Horse of the Year Show, in 1997, when it was struggling with poor attendances and was on the verge of extinction. In 2002, following the rejuvenation of the event over their first 5 years of management, Grandstand Group made the brave decision to move the event, which had been staged at Wembley for 42 years, to the Midlands based NEC. Now in their 12th year of management, the company regularly achieves sell-out performances and rave reviews from visitors and the media.
As part of Grandstand Group’s continued development and involvement in equestrian sport, Horse of the Year Show now shares its Birmingham home with the British Open Show Jumping Championships which was launched by the Group in Sheffield in 2003 and relocated to the NEC in 2007. The British Open has quickly established itself as one of the country’s blue chip equestrian competitions and provides leading British equestrian competitors, from a range of disciplines, with an additional national top flight event which is enjoyed by its many thousands of visitors.
Mark Wein commented, “Equestrianism has experienced a resurgence over the past decade and this award demonstrates its popularity through the visitor numbers and media interest we are attracting to the Shows each year. The NEC has proven to be the perfect host for our events and there is an enormous amount of work that goes on behind the scenes to create these two hugely popular equestrian sporting spectaculars. It is therefore a testament to our team that we have been named the NEC’s Sports Promoter of the Year 2007.”