If you are lucky enough to get tickets for the 2017 Cheltenham Festival, you might be puzzled as to what you might wear. Contrary to popular consensus, there is no dress code enforced on Ladies’ Day or any other day of the Cheltenham Festival. The haute couture is usually reserved for the likes of Royal Ascot, or Ladies’ Day at Aintree. Put simply, at Cheltenham you can wear what you like. However, there are certain dos and don’ts that can make your visit to the races a more pleasant experience.

Ladies’ Day – comfort dressing could be the most fashionable choice!

While it has now become a custom to dress up for Ladies’ Day, it is by no means mandatory. The official advice from the Festival organisers is to dress for comfort. Every year hundreds of women ignore this advice and make the long march from the train station to the racecourse in three inch heels. There is nothing glamourous about having a shoe stuck in the mud in the terrain that surrounds the course. The weather too can play its part. Temperatures in March average between 3 and 10 degrees Celsius, yet many racegoers will neglect to bring a coat. A hat may be viewed as the finishing touch to your outfit, but it can also be useful in both the rain or sunshine. It is entirely possible to be fashionable, yet dress for comfort in what can be a long day. Flat shoes, jackets and hats might not always be very glamorous, but this is after all the countryside and not a nightclub.

Fancy Dress if you wish, but do not be offensive

In recent years, many racegoers have attended the Cheltenham Festival in novelty costumes. While this adds to the colour and pageantry of the Festival, there are also some pitfalls to avoid. The golden rule is not to be offensive. The Festival organisers reserve the right to refuse admission to anyone wearing costumes that could be deemed inappropriate. You should refrain from wearing anything with religious or political connotations, as well as anything too lewd or provocative. You should also note that you will not gain entry to the Club Enclosure in fancy dress on any day of the Cheltenham Festival. Again, while there is no official dress code for the Club Enclosure, you will find that most men will deem it appropriate to wear a suit.

Fashion should be the last thing on your mind at the Cheltenham Festival

If you are paying too much attention to what people are wearing, you may be at the wrong festival! Cheltenham features some of the most incredible runners and riders in the sport of horse racing. Four days of explosive action, featuring 28 of the best races in the national hunt calendar.  You can look at William Hill’s full Cheltenham Festival 2017 coverage to get all the information you need for betting on the event, which will take place from 14th – 18th March.

Whether you dress to impress, or dress to keep out the elements, make sure you enjoy one of the greatest events in the UK sporting calendar.