Thursday, 30 April 2009 12:00 AM
Billy Bottle, the British Glass recycling mascot, raced against 54 other mascots to win the Mascot Gold cup at the sunny Wetherby Races on 26 April 2009.
The world's largest mascot race, sponsored by Foresters, was as always a huge hit with the race-going crowd, raising over £15,000 for charity, the majority going to Sue Ryder Care who co-organised the event with Yorkshire Young Farmers.
It was a triumph for Billy who, in the last three outings, failed to finish in the top ten. This time though he left other mascots stunned at the speed he achieved as he raced to the winning line.
Billy only got to run because he impressed Harrogate farmer and owner of 'Organic Dales', Stephen Lofthouse who paid the entry fee. Another firm believer that Billy had bottle was Craig Dyson who agreed to run in him only a few days before the race.
Andrew Wood explained that he was delighted with the amount raised, "Mascots have now raised over £65,000 in the four years that the race has been run and we are very lucky that the majority of this has come to Sue Ryder Care to help us fund our crucial work in hospices and neurological care centres throughout the country. A big thank you goes to the team at Wetherby Racecourse and Conference Centre, all the mascots, our sponsors and everyone who volunteers their time for this event."
Full results of the runners can be found on the event's official website at www.mascotgoldcup.org.uk