If you’ve been watching my Instagram closely, you’ll have probably noticed that I attended Ladies Day at Royal Ascot on Thursday – a prestigious yearly event that calls for thousands of people to throw on their best (and most extravagant) hats, with picnic baskets full to the brim with traditional British delights and head for the grand racecourse in Berkshire. I had been invited along with a handful of other bloggers, by Sky Bet and Search Laboratory, introducing us to the world of betting – and providing an all round fabulous day.
After having my hair blow-dried at the fabulous Neville Hair & Beauty in Knightsbridge (more on this in another post), I practically ran the entire way (minus the tube intervals) to Waterloo and managed to make the 10.50 train to Ascot. Usually quite a formal place, it was astounding to see an entire crowd of brightly coloured hats and dresses making their way to Platform 19 (I didn’t even need to look at the departures board).
The train journey lasted just under an hour and arrived at Ascot with plenty of time to spare before the Queen’s procession at 2.30pm. I met the lovely Lottie on the platform, as well as Charlie and Rebecca, who looked beautiful in their summery dresses and fascinators. Together, we made our way up to the racecourse (rather treacherously in our wobbly heels) to find the table that had been prepared for us, laden with bottles of champagne, lemonade, strawberries and pork pies.
Although we’d set up our Sky Bet accounts before arriving, we were kindly given some betting money to utilise on the day – which we used via their app. The Silver Ring, where we were seated, hosts a large number of betting stalls and vans – however the queues for this are vast and everything has to be done manually so to have an app where you could quickly place a bet without interrupting your conversation too much, or even having to leave the comfort of your chair and glass of champagne, was a massive bonus. Obviously you don’t have to bet, as you can just enjoy the races and be left to your own devices but at each half hour interval, when a new race begins – there is a certain buzz in the air and excitement if you have actually placed a bet, especially if you go onto win!
I’d love to say my betting techniques were a roaring success but unfortunately that wasn’t the case. Lottie and I tended to opt for the ones with the names we liked – or (even worse, I’m sure) the colour of the riders jacket. Our bets on race 1 were on a pink rider with the highest odds (I think this meant, least likely to win). However, I did get lucky on one race – and won a whopping £6.50!
The Queen’s procession was probably my favourite part of the day, as although my eyesight is terrible and she was practically a dot from where we were standing (even though we were at the front), I honestly became so overwhelmed with emotion I nearly burst into tears (champagne may have contributed to this) – I think this may have been documented on Jess’s vlog (oops). I am a massive Royals fan and have never had the opportunity to see the Queen before, so this was incredible to watch! She wasn’t waving much though, I must say – I suppose it is pretty tiring doing it every day!
Outfit wise, I wore an ensemble entirely from my mum’s wardrobe. I knew I was going to be travelling for at least 3 hours, so I wanted something comfortable but within the dress code! I love the summer-y, almost neon colour of this dress matched with nude peep toes (which are supposed to create the illusion of longer legs, hmm…).
Overall, we had a throughly lovely day and I can’t thank Sky Bet and Search Laboratory enough for being such welcoming and friendly hosts! A day spent with great company, delicious food and champagne on tap is definitely a good day! If you are attending any of the remaining days, I’d definitely recommend downloading Sky Bet’s app for placing hassle free digital bets!
Have you ever been to Royal Ascot – or were you at Ladies Day too? I’d love to hear your thoughts!