The timing of the Australian Turf Club’s announcement that Saturday’s Everest horse race has doubled its attendance to 10,000 guests at Sydney’s Royal Randwick Racecourse was perfect. Racers who care as much about their clothes as odds have already celebrated the city’s Freedom Day in queues at beauty salons, barbers and forehead technicians.
With its $ 15 million prize money, Everest has been trying to drown out the thunder at the Melbourne Cup Carnival since its launch in 2019, and a style attack is part of the deafening arsenal. The Melbourne Cup had already announced that 10,000 guests will be allowed through their gates, picking up Princess Diana’s niece Lady Kitty Spencer as part of its fashion judging panel, and Everest has gone into overdrive to catch up.
“We’ve already seen an increase in searches,” said Bernadette Olivier, co-founder of e-boutique The Volte, which houses 500 dress rental services. “Customers in Sydney have already booked their out-of-lock-out outfits, but now we’re seeing increases in more traditional pieces and millinery, making it clear they are booking for the races.”
Zimmermann and international brands Rixo and Cult Gaia are the most popular brands being hired for the races, where the women participated in Everest in a pink halterneck top by Aje and a red dress from Acler that had already beaten the odds.
“These pieces have been booked back-to-back until Christmas,” Olivier said.
Sydney miller Neil Griggs is now working on the same number of hats for Everest as he did last year, when attendance reached 11,000.
“I even have a customer who’s not sure what they’s wearing, so they ordered two hats,” Grigg said. “It’s hard to go from lockdown when you were trying to get inspired by coloring feathers or creating something for the window for this. Imagine if the Caulfield Cup was on. Then things would really happen. ”
The Melbourne Caulfield Cup continues without the crowd in the stands on Saturday, while Sydney’s style, with a nose for champagne and the occasional touch of horsemeat, prepares for a photo finish on Everest.