IN PICTURES | 'It is time' for thrilling Durban July fashion
Time stood still as thousands of horseracing enthusiasts turned up in their classic fashion favorites for the 122nd Vodacom Durban July on Saturday.
"Racegoers finally understand that race day is not a pantomime," Gold Circle spokesman Dave Macleod said.
He was referring to the clean-cut, sophisticated fashion paraded at the racecourse where at least 50,000 were expected to converge for the country's most prestigious horse racing event.
"This year, racegoers and designers have not taken the theme as literally as they usually do. Today's fashion is about what race day fashion used to be. We are seeing elegant classics and not the avant-garde fashion of previous years," said Macleod.
While there were a few oversized watches and motifs of clocks on outfits, most opted for stylish hats, three-piece suits or the simple little black dress as their interpretation of the theme "It Is Time."
The annual event is the biggest horseracing event in the country and attracts more than 50,000 people, who cram the confines of the Greyville Racecourse to take in the fashion spectacular, entertainment and horseracing while millions watch the spectacle on television.
The marquee village crawls with first time attendees as well as loyal enthusiasts. The highly-anticipated event attracts dignitaries and celebrities.
Macleod said the raceday was the centre of an economic tidal wave that sees tills ringing across the province, with R160-million spent directly in the region by Vodacom Durban July visitors.
"Add to that over R100 million wagered on totes on-course and off-course, and the raceday’s economic churn is expected to be close to R300 million this year," it said.