18 July 2019
It’s that time of the year once more. You’re dressed up in your best outfit out in the fresh air. The smell of the freshly cut grass hits your nostrils, as the sun creeps out from behind the clouds. You see the vibrant jockey silks rushing closer to the finish line, feel the rumble under your feet and hear the deafening cheer as they cross the line. It’s the summer racing season, and you may already have your ticket booked for a race day. So how do you get more from your day at the races?
For many of us, there are only a handful of opportunities a year where we get to dress up all fancy. Perhaps a wedding, or a Christmas party, or maybe an anniversary dinner? And though we can be exceptionally excited to dress up with friends and family, finally get some new profile pictures for your social media or have an excuse to buy something new. Something a lot of people don’t think out is footwear.
Whatever you choose, you need something that will be comfortable (or at least bearable) for the whole day, including any after racing entertainment. You need something that will perform whatever the weather, and to keep you upright over potentially uneven ground. If you want some other tips of what to wear, we produced a style guide earlier this year with some great ideas.
If you’re a loyal fan of a particular race day at a particular course, then you’re probably already quite familiar with where you are going. If you are brand new, you may want to spend a little time getting acquainted with the course.
Most racecourses offer a map of the facilities to help you out, but it’s always a good idea to have a wander about and get your bearings. Why not use some of the time from when the gates open to when the first race starts to find out where you can get food and drink from, where the nearest loos are, or even where is the best place to watch from if it rains. You can also secure a good place trackside if that’s where you want to watch from and work how the quickest way to the parade ring.
Betting at the races is a time-honoured tradition and one that many racegoers follow. If you do want to get involved, and place a bet or two, make sure to set a limit and stick to it. You don’t want to be spending your taxi money home!
A good tip is to take cash out at your agreed limit and put it in one pocket, or part of your bag. If you are lucky and win, put your winnings into a different pocket or part of your bag. Once your original limit pocket is spent, it is spent, you need to stop betting. If you have lost, you only lost what you had already put aside to bet. If you have won, you can enjoy your winnings on a later date, or on something else you can enjoy and celebrate you got the better of the bookies.
A racecard is essentially a really detailed programme, which provides you with loads of insight into the day. This is an especially handy purchase if you are going to be betting, as it gives you loads of background on the horses competing.
Though it can be a bit intimidating to a new racegoer, once you work out what the details are, it is an amazing set of information that allows you to make informed bets. To help you understand the race card a little better, our partners over at Value Rater Racing Club have put together a video to explain what each of the details are and why they matter to you.
No matter what ticket type you choose, you are sure to have a good day. But you can make your day special by upgrading to hospitality. Enjoy unrivalled views, delicious food and perks like free racecards, better parking and drinks offers. If you’re already dressing up for the occasion, why not have the background to match?
Almost all racecourses offer hospitality at varying levels. With shared restaurants, where you can be part of the atmosphere but still enjoy a beautiful sit-down meal, or private boxes and spaces, to offer a bit more privacy for you and your group.
Bath Racecourse has several hospitality options, including the Instagram worthy rooftop garden. With packages to suit everyone, from entertaining clients, rewarding your staff, birthday parties and hen dos, you can get a great offer to make your day that little bit more special. View our restaurants and hospitality section for more information or go to our calendar to book hospitality for your chosen race day.
Written by Lauren Keeling - Arena Racing Company