Belfast Telegraph

Down Royal Festival: Go the extra furlong in race style stakes

Turn heads at Down Royal this weekend in fabulous fashion - and get under starter's orders for a spectacular prize

This weekend will see a carnival of colour as the Festival of Racing at Down Royal takes place. Saturday will be especially bright as the traditional Ladies' Day will feature the Victoria Square Best Dressed Lady competition.

The Ladies' Day offers an amazing prize of a trip to Rio de Janeiro for the lady voted the best dressed.

It's a chance to show off the wild hats and fabulous dresses as judges mull over the entries of the biggest and boldest ensembles to crown the winner.

And these stunning items from Victoria Square, Belfast, would be certain to turn heads.

Rio is generally considered to be Brazil's liveliest location, a city where tropical rainforests and monolithic mountains collide to form one of the most spectacular landscapes in the world.

The prize comprises of return flights from Dublin, a 10-night stay in a four-star hotel close to Copacabana Beach and guided tours taking in the city's most famous landmarks, including the Christ the Redeemer statue and Sugarloaf Mountain.

Down Royal Festival of Racing takes place tomorrow and Saturday, when the National Hunt horse racing world descends upon Northern Ireland at the Co Down racecourse with over 1.5 million people tuning in to watch the action from the racetrack.

Mike Todd, general manager of Down Royal Racecourse said: "Ladies' Day at Down Royal is as competitive as the horse racing on the track and I'm excited to welcome Victoria Square to the Festival of Racing once again.

"There can only be one lucky winner of the Rio prize, which is out of this world, but we can definitely guarantee a great day out for everyone."

Entries for the Victoria Square Best Dressed Lady title can be submitted in the Dark Horse Cafe and Wine bar in Hill Street and in the foyer of the Guinness suite this Saturday.

Michelle Greeves, centre manager of Victoria Square, added: "We are really looking forward to witnessing the style and glamour at this year's Down Royal Festival of Racing and to judge the highlight of the festival, the Best Dressed Lady. My top tip is to look stylish but also seasonal - a jumpsuit and an amazing jacket or dress and coat never goes out of style."

Gates to the racecourse open at 11am with the first race starting at approximately 12.50pm.

Hospitality options are available from £60 or regular admission is priced at £12 for tomorrow, and £15 on Ladies' Day, Saturday.

To find out more about Down Royal Festival of Racing go to

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