How to Prepare for a Day at the Races in and Around Glasgow

There are some great opportunities to enjoy a day at the races for those who live in Glasgow. Hamilton Park Racecourse is only 15 miles from the city centre and Ayr racecourse is just 37 miles south-west of the city.

While a day at the races can be a highly enjoyable experience, if you fail to prepare properly, it could all go so wrong. Make sure that you make the most of your day by noting these practical tips.

What should I wear?

When it comes to dressing for a special occasion, deciding what to wear for the races perhaps presents the biggest challenge of all, especially for the ladies. Thanks to formal traditions and strict dress codes, many end up wearing something that they don’t feel comfortable in. Fortunately, Hampton Park doesn’t enforce a dress code, and Ayr’s is extremely lax. Still, you will want to ensure that you spend adequate preparation time in your fashion choices.

The no. 1 rule is to avoid wearing high heels, as you will be on your feet for the entire day. A delicate pair of ballet pumps would be a wise move. If you’d prefer not to wear a hat, you could play with clips, headbands, and bows, which would look far younger and cooler than a traditional hat. Floral day dresses give the most elegant appearance at the races, and it would help your budget to buy those you could also wear at summer weddings.

It’s my first time

This is your chance to mingle with the rich and famous, bet on a contender with the most bizarre name, and enjoy a glass of Pimms. There are events all year-round so there will always be an opportunity to lose your race day virginity.

You will spend time debating which hat to wear, choosing your outfit, and may just put the actual racing to the back of your mind: a rookie mistake.

You’ll want to soak up the thrills roughly 40 minutes before the racing starts in the pre-parade ring, where you can see your horse warm up before being saddled. About 20 minutes prior to the start time, the horses are guided around the parade, offering you a good look before you decide to place your bet. You can also see the jockeys after their weigh-in when they are advised by their trainer.

Then it’s time to place your bet. Be aware that the odds can change rapidly with each bookmaker. For the best view of the winning horse, you will want to make your way over to the stands about 10 minutes before the race, Once the race is over, you can pay a visit to the winner’s enclosure to watch the jockeys being interviewed.

I’m in between races right now

It may be some time between races, or if you arrive very early, you may already be feeling the excitement. Unlike decades ago, you now have a tool capable of giving you the inside track on what’s on at the course, while providing a little entertainment between races – your mobile phone.

Sifting through a mountain of horse racing tips is an arduous business at times, but for a quick and beginner-friendly look at what horse to back, is a good place to start.

As well as offering handy betting guides and betting markets often better than those at the course, online betting site features hundreds of popular games, including roulette and poker. This can be a fun distraction between races and serves as a great way to keep lady luck on-side.

I’m not ready to go home

Your entertainment doesn’t need to finish once the final race is over. Relax and enjoy your winnings at one of the local bars. You’re in Glasgow, after all.

The Tap Room, just a skip away from Hamilton Park, is among the local favourites. The bar and restaurant serves up some tasty traditional homemade pub food. if you haven’t had a chance to eat since leaving the races. There is always entertainment offered too, such as a weekly quiz, card games, karaoke, and music.

Near Ayr racecourse, the Tam O’Shanter Inn is allegedly the oldest pub in town and bears strong connections to Robbie Burns. A great place to enjoy a pint, it also serves up some tasty fish and chips. The former museum is the only surviving pub on Ayr’s high street. With its live music and open mic nights, it’s a great end to an enjoyable day at the races.