This year’s Royal Ascot was one of exhilarating surprises and triumphs. We at Oliver Brown were proud to outfit many of the attendees of the Royal Enclosure in what was a whirlwind of a week for the shop. Opening hours were extended from 8.00am to 8.00pm in order to facilitate the needs of countless race-goers, and everything from footwear to silk top hats were galloping off the shelves to produce the finest sartorial show of Britain’s social and sporting calendar.
Records were broken in racing and fashion. The weather was stunning. The eighteen Group races over the course of the week, eight of them Group One, have made household names of Royal Ascot winners like Black Caviar, Frankel and Yeats. Each year the meeting is broadcast to audiences around the globe, yet to experience it in person is something altogether more special.
Our tips at OB were a great success as well. Customers, and staff alike, studied the hand-written boards behind the till for the chance to extend their fortunes, and after dashing off to the betting shop, the days were punctuated with brief, pregnant pauses while eyes were glued to the televisions which were tuned in to each day's proceedings.A very brief rec-cap of the week is set out below:
Accidental Agent, with odds at 33-1, opened the races by winning the Queen Anne Stakes. From there, the excitement continued (and in four races on Opening Day, our tips predicted the winners!).
Crowds were delighted to see The Duke and Duchess of Sussex as a part of the Royal Procession in one of their first public appearances. The Royal couple are pictured here presenting a trophy to Frankie Dettori following his big win.
As the gates opened for the second day of Ascot, guests were welcomed with the beautiful harmonies of the ‘Tootsie Rollers’, and Sir Mo Farah was seen again wearing Oliver Brown.
The day saw huge wins for Aiden O’Brien and Signora Cabello came in at 25-1 in the Queen Mary Stakes.
Ladies Day takes place on the Thursday of the annual event each year, coinciding with The Gold Cup, Ascot's longest surviving race. The term ‘Ladies Day’ was coined in 1923, by an anonymous poet who described the day as ‘Ladies’ Day... when the women, like angels, look sweetly divine’. Thousands of impressively-dressed people turned out to the races showcasing, as always, some of the finest millinery and tailoring in the world.
In racing we saw an epic Gold Cup, a thrilling finish to the Norfolk, and some standout Aiden O’Brien performers.
Friday was a day of more surprises and upheavals. Alpha Centauri smashed the track record, Godolphin won again, which overall caused some bad results for the bookies.
The final day of the races was no less exciting than the rest. Arthur Kitt won the opening race, and Bacchus at 33-1 stole the day with an unexpected victory. Soldier's Call provided fledgling trainer Archie Watson with his first winner at Royal Ascot with victory in the Windsor Castle Stakes.
Now that Royal Ascot is over and we have a moment to draw breath, we should like to thank all of our patrons for their continued support. June is the busiest month of the year at Oliver Brown. People from all over the world visited our corner of Chelsea last week and were united in a common love of racing and exceptionally fine morning wear, and what a pleasure it was.