Well there’s no going back now: Melbourne’s Spring Racing Carnival is officially here, with the teaser event that is the Carnival Preview Day.
Taking advantage of two things we love the most, blue skies and free entry, the day set the scene for what’s to come for the carnival: great fashion, big crowds, an array of celebrity appearances, sunshine (here’s hoping), oh, and those horses running around an oval track.
The technical function of the day - The Underwood Stakes - commenced the series of Group One races that will be held throughout the 65 days of racing. Black Caviar paraded around the mounting yard for her last public appearance prior to the Caulfield Guineas. Yes, this beautiful horse is as much a celebrity as any person, and with 65 days being a fair chunk of time, you should probably get on top of all these topical aspects of racing.
If that fails, talk about the fashion (boys, even you might be able to get away with this one). There was a lot to love about the fashion at this event. Firstly, Bree Laughlin was named as this year’s ‘Face of Caulfield’. She’ll be heading up an assortment of activities, from rocking it in front of the camera to co-hosting fashion competitions and keeping everyone up-to-date through social media and blogging.
If you still need convincing on the credentials of Australian Fashion, look no further than the Caufield Classic Style Award. This award honours fashion designers and retailers from around the country as they showcase the best of their spring racing attire. As Fiona Twist (MRC Events Manager) says, “This year’s entries are stunning and prove that we needn’t look to international designers for our race wear.” With designers including Black Rose, Calibre, Elizabeth Seferian, Mr K,Mucci & Me, Nevenka, Nicholas, Noni B, Reverie, Perri Cutten, Review, Simona, State of Geogia, T.L Wood and Woodford & Co. on board, it’s certainly an impressive list.
Finally, the Pin and Win program (the major charity activity associated with BMW Caufield Cup Day) is on again. Racegoers can purchase a pin for $5 throughout the carnival, with proceeds going directly to the Epilepsy Foundation. With this little act of good will you will be entered in the draw for the Pin and Win hat, a unique piece of quality handmade millinery.
This year, the Pin and Win hat will be created by three of Melbourne’s best milliners: Peter Jago, Melissa Jackson and Annette Sanfilippo. For dedicated racegoers, these names will be old hat (you know it) as all three have established careers and fashionistas don their creations every year. No doubt the combined effort of these top designers will produce something stunning, and the winner gets to take their creation home on Schweppes Thousand Guineas Day.
That’s all for now, but let us keep you up-to-date on all the excitement and glamour of the track during Spring Racing in the weeks to come.
WORDS: Yvette Edsall