George Ward passes away
George Ward, one of racing's most prolific sponsors, died on Monday aged 79, after a short illness.
Ward originally supported the Grunwick National Hunt Flat Race series and followed up sponsoring under the Bonusprint, Doubleprint and Tripleprint banners.
He believed strongly that racing and terrestrial television coverage could create the necessary exposure for his brand names and his banners became a feature on many UK courses.
Over 22 years Ward invested £25 million into race sponsorship and amongst the courses he supported were Ascot, Aintree, Cheltenham, Sandown, Goodwood and Newmarket.
Races he sponsored included the Bonusprint King George VI Chase at Kempton on Boxing Day, the Tripleprint Gold Cup at Cheltenham in December, the Bonusprint Stayers' Hurdle at the Festival, the Bonusprint Bula Hurdle and the Bonusprint Old Roan Chase at Aintree.
He also backed the all-weather championships at Arena's tracks.
Ward was a key figure in the re-launch of the Horseracing Sponsors Association about 20 years ago.
As president, he spent many years developing the Association which represents the interests of all UK horse racing sponsors.
Ward is survived by his wife Loretto and his two sons Anthony and Francis and their families.