Doncaster Racecourse became a sea of purple when the Ant Marketing Weston Park Cancer Charity Race returned earlier this month. In total, the evening raised £41,000 towards cancer care, treatment advances and research.
The event came back with a bang on Jubilee Weekend (after a three-year gap due to the pandemic) and featured live music from the Kaiser Chiefs.
In addition to raising tens of thousands of pounds for Weston Park Cancer Charity, many of the 8,000-plus racegoers helped spread vital awareness of the organisation's work by wearing purple for the day. There was even an award recognising the ‘best dressed’ guests at the event.
Live Sky TV coverage — branding all around the course including the finish line, Grandstand, County Stand and hospitality areas — helped to further amplify the awareness generated by the event.
Weston Park Cancer Charity exists to make life better for anyone living in South Yorkshire and Bassetlaw who is affected by cancer – including those diagnosed or going through treatment. Hundreds of free tickets were also generously provided by Doncaster Racecourse for patients at Weston Park Cancer Centre, and their families.
Generous donations by racegoers on the day added to an impressive fundraising total. Live and silent auctions, as well as funds generated by particular ticket package sales will also help the charity provide cancer support services, enable vital research and improve treatment experiences for people facing cancer.
Darren Hayes, Head of Fundraising at Weston Park Cancer Charity, said: “We’re delighted with the success of the Ant Marketing Weston Park Cancer Charity Race Evening following its return. It’s been a long three years since the last one, as it’s such a big part of our events calendar – but it was worth the wait.
“It’s testament to how crucial the work of Weston Park Cancer Charity is that people still want to give so generously to our cause, despite the obvious societal challenges currently – not least a cost of living crisis and a pandemic.
“Money raised by the event will help us to continue to enhance people’s experience when going through cancer treatment, whether that’s by providing complementary therapies to free transport, to toys we provide for children undergoing radiotherapy, to investments we make in wards so that people’s stay in hospital can be as comfortable as possible.
“This would not have been possible without our event hosts, Doncaster Racecourse, and our generous sponsors and supporters for their extreme generosity. That includes headline sponsors Ant Marketing – who continue to help make our events special with their unwavering backing.”
Anthony Hinchliffe, CEO of event headline sponsor Ant Marketing, said: “We’re thrilled to hear how much was raised by the return of the Ant Marketing Weston Park Cancer Charity Race Evening.
“Weston Park – both the charity and the hospital – will always have a special place in my heart. It’s a wonderful place and one which saved my life following my diagnosis and treatment for cancer in 2017.
“I know that I’m far from alone. Weston Park, and cancer for that matter, touches so many people’s lives in our region, so supporting treatment, care and research is paramount. Weston Park is everything that is great about our region.”
Rachel Harwood, Executive Director at Doncaster Racecourse, said: “We were extremely proud to see the return of the Ant Marketing Weston Park Cancer Charity Race Evening recently.
“The event always makes such an impact for people going through cancer in our region, including in Doncaster. We’ve raised over £190,000 through our special partnership with Weston Park Cancer Charity since 2016 – fundraising made all the more impressive given the two-year hiatus of this event due to Covid-19.
“Huge thank you to everyone who gave so generously and who supported the event. We can’t wait for next year already!”
For more information on Weston Park Cancer Charity, its annual Race Evening, or its commitment to enabling research, providing support and enhancing treatment, visit www.westonpark.org.uk or call 0114 553 3330.