If you find yourself in England this week, you might consider attending the Royal Ascot. The Royal Ascot runs from Tuesday through Saturday, more than 300,000 people will be in attendance. You may even find yourself rubbing elbows with The Queen who will be there every day.
The venue is about an hour train ride out of London. But tough luck if you have not yet purchased your ticket, the train is sold out. Good news, there remain a few slots so you can book one of the private helicopters! There is a third option to get to the races, if you made a good impression on the Queen, you know, from your earlier elbow rubbing, she may invite you to ride with her in the royal horse drawn carriage (but don’t hold your breath).
Food and drinks will be abundantly available during the races, including three options for afternoon tea. You are welcome to bring your own picnic but note that authorities will be strictly monitoring one rule – only one bottle of Champagne permitted per person. That works!
For more than 300 years the Berkshire countryside has hosted the best of Thoroughbred racing. The Royal Ascot is THEE event for the British social calendar with press coverage of the attendees and what they wear often exceeding coverage of the actual races. So let’s get right to it, you’re not getting in the front gate in jeans and sneakers. So what are you going to wear? Don’t panic! Your host wants you to fit in and they’ve prepared a “Style Guide of Sartorial Elegance” with “kind reminders” of proper attire.
Let’s now talk about those hats! Class and formality be damned, London’s millineries put the Kentucky Derby hat makers to shame. The Brits do women’s hats bigger and better. Ladies Day at the Royal Ascot (Thursday this year) might best be renamed “Big Ass Whacky Hat Day”. Your host has one more “kind reminder” with regard to your choice of hat; “it should coordinate with your fetching outfit and please remember to prep and style your hair accordingly.”
Now you’re all set for a day (or five) at the Royal Ascot. You look great, you have a bottle of DOM clenched in your fist, you’ve successfully held your bladder through the bathroom line, go forth now and enjoy the races!