Spring is here and with that comes seersucker and pastels, not to mention horse races. While other countries are known for horse racing, namely England and Australia, it’s also an art form in the South.
Nearly every state has their own steeplechase, but the most well-known is the Kentucky Derby. Atlanta’s Steeplechase and Camden’s Carolina Cup are also popular, but I attended Aiken, South Carolina’s steeplechase. Here’s everything you need to know for your very first steeplechase.
Tips for Attending a Steeplechase
1. Dress the part. As with many events in the South, there is a dress code. Think khaki for men and pastels and big hats for women. You’ve seen the fascinators at the Kentucky Derby, so take inspiration from what you’ve seen in the past. Don’t worry about spending too much money as there are budget-friendly options.
2. Hydrate. Bring a cooler for snacks, water, and of course, adult beverages to enjoy while you’re waiting for the race to begin. I recommend a sturdy cooler rather than a cheap styrofoam one, which can easily break. Each race has its own rules regarding what you can bring with you so double check before you go.
3. Place your bets. I picked horses based on the funniest names, like Happy Seamus, but there is some real sort of method to betting. Seek out a veteran horse if it’s your first time so that you can read up on past races.
5. Socialize. The races themselves don’t last more than a few minutes, so it’s all about meeting other people at the races.
Have you ever been to a steeplechase?