From Ceduna to Mount Gambier and everywhere in between, there is so much to experience when it comes to South Australian racing events. All 25 race clubs throughout the state hold a Cup event every year, which coincide with the Fashion at The Races qualifying events. Wherever you live, there's an event happening near you, and there's nothing better on a Cup day than a big crowd to enjoy the action.
If you've got a Cup set in your sights for 2017, these are the 5 things you should be ticking off your list!
1. Pick yourself up a form guide
If you're a first timer, it's absolutely okay to have all the gear and no idea. A form guide will instantly make you look like a racing pro, and can be emphasized with the intermittent flicking through of the pages to seem like you're looking at the form. Alternatively, if you know what you're doing, the form guide will be extremely helpful for you to follow the racing action both on course and interstate.
2. Enter Fashion at The Races
The Fashion at The Races event is always a highlight of the day, with plenty of people gathering around to watch the entrants put their best foot forward. Whether you've planned your outfit for months or you're a spontaneous entrant, Fashions on the Field welcomes everyone young and old and everywhere in between. The process is simple, just register for the competition and make sure to return when the competition kicks off. Head up on stage and show yourself off, while the judges make their decisions. There are great prizes to be won at every event so really, what have you got to lose!
3. Sample the local wines on offer
The races and wine are quite the partnership, and in a state like South Australia where wine is what we do, it's even better. Many race courses around the state are in close proximity to some of the best wineries around. There are collaborations with Clubs and wineries at many Cup events, giving you a great opportunity to sample the local varieties. If you taste something you like, make sure to visit the cellar door after the racing festivities.
4. Pick a horse to win the Cup
Whether you have a punt, or don't put down any money at all, it's always fun to be behind a horse racing for the Cup. Some experts may be able to figure out the favourite with odds and other racing info, but really, sometimes it's just as lucky to pick your favourite number, or favourite jockey silk colours as the winner!
5. Make a weekend of it!
SA's Race and Jockey Clubs are set in some of the most picturesque towns of the state, surrounded by quality restaurants, cafes, hotels, cellar doors, brewieres and more. There's nothing quite like a quick weekend getaway to make you feel like you've had a holiday, and it all centres on a Saturday or Sunday trackside. If you're heading to the Kangaroo Island Cup Carnival, treat yourself to absolute luxury at the Southern Ocean Lodge. For the Oakbank Easter Races, a dining and accomodation experience at The Stirling Hotel won't feel like you're 20 minutes from home, and recharge you for the next day where you can visit wineries like The Lane, Goldings and lunch at Maximilians.
View from the Southern Ocean Lodge in Kangaroo Island.