What Men Wear At The Races

What Men Wear At The Races

Each and every year, there is a great deal written about what women are wearing to big time horse racing events. Over time, these events have become almost as closely associated with fashion as they are with sport, to the point that many of them even designate entire days to style watching and outfit exhibitions. Check out this recap of the 2015 Cheltenham Festival Ladies Day in England, and you'll get the idea: on these "ladies days," everyone is dressed to impress, sometimes nearly to a comical extent, and women in particular catch a great deal of attention from the press.

And of course when it's not specifically Ladies Day, horse racing festivals tend to be primarily about the races themselves! This is the main draw no matter how closely fashion becomes associated with the sport, and at this site you can get a good feel for just how much attention is paid to the competition. There are recaps from last year's Cheltenham Festival and other major events that demonstrate the level of detail the fans absorb when analyzing the competitors, watching the races, and discussing the outcomes.

But sometimes lost in all the attention devoted to ladies' fashion and actual competition at major horse racing festivals is the fact that men, too, tend to look their most festive and stylish at such events. Here's how the guys go about it.

For starters, there's no law that says the popular tradition of a race day hat only applies to women! Granted, the ladies' hats tend to be the highlights from a fashion perspective of horse races. The over-the-top, inventive, and glamorous designs have almost spiraled into a style category all their own. But men, too, tend to have some fun with hats at the tracks. If you're really looking to get into the occasion, these races are about the best (or rather, only) chances you've had to sport a top hat since your senior prom. On the other hand, many opt for a slightly more muted, classy approach. Fedoras are quite common for men at the tracks, and some prominent trainers have even been known to get in on the action. Superstar trainer Paul Nicholls in particular consistently demonstrates the casual but noticeable appeal of the jaxon cap.

As a more general piece of advice, a day at the races is also a great time to wear a suit—and not just one you have reserved for a typical day at the office, or set aside for weddings. The idea is to really get inventive and perhaps try some things you don't ordinarily go for. Usually the most noteworthy men's outfits at horse racing events are three-piece suits that employ subtle touches to add a bit of "flair," for lack of a better word. Think pocket squares, statement cufflinks, or colorful or intricately patterned ties. Remember, while the best looks tend to be extremely fashionable, there's also something slightly offbeat about horse racing style; it's meant to be fun. These elements can certainly be used to help you match a date, if you happen to be attending with one, but they're best implemented purely for self-expression.

Three piece suit with pocket square

Patterned tie with pocket square

Branching off of the idea of suit embellishments, a day at the races is also a great time to get a little more adventurous with shoes and accessories than you might ordinarily be. This guide to men's horse race outfits had a lot of brilliant examples in this regard. While the selection catered to extremely high-end accessories (think five-figure watches), the concepts are easy enough to run with on your own budget. Unique wallets, sneaker/dress shoe combinations, and even accessory umbrellas all stood out.

Accessories- Umbrella

Really, that about does it for a general outline. To summarize, it's best to find a tasteful combination of stylish and fun attire. Race day fashion is all about looking simultaneously trendy enough to blend in and unique enough to stand out. And if you go a little overboard, it'll probably be appreciated by those taking note.

Pictures sourced online

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