Style Tips For Opening Day At The Del Mar Races


dress: Madewell, hat: B.Scene, earrings: unknown, belt: Target, wedges: Bandolino, gold band ring: Ariella, cocktail ring: unknown

I am not one to gamble, but I am one for speeding horses and overpriced alcoholic beverages. Next Wednesday, opening day at the Del Mar Race Track will give us the usual thrill of bets, sun, bursts of beautiful equines, and demands for fabulous fashion. Every year fashionable folk from San Diego and beyond trek over to the track to celebrate summer.

Before selecting your outfit for Opening Day’s festivities, here are some tips to consider…


If not for tradition, don a hat to block the sun when you press up against the fence for a jockey-horse close-up. As for what kind of hat, unless you are competing in the One and Only Truly Fabulous Hat Contest, known to me as the Ridiculous Hat Contest, choose classic or discreet hat decór.


Think garden party or day wedding. Leave evening dress up at home and break out a fabulous summer dress. Shorts or a skirt could work, but dress it up and think fresh. It’s too hot for pants, unless we are talking linen, but then you would probably be under dressed.

Ditch the Dark

Skip serious hues and sport bold colors or fresh neutrals.


Whatever you wear, keep it light. Ditch cashmere, ponte, or other heavy fabrics. Slip into the silk or step into that cotton and enjoy the airy ambiance of the event down to your toes.


Grass, gravel, stairs and drinking amounts to leaving the stilettos at home. Stick to wedges or flats.

The Del Mar Races start on July 17th and end on September 4th.


Photo Credit: Robin Dayley/Dayley Photography


  1. July 10, 2013 / 1:08 am

    Gorgeous! and love the attire as well. You certainly rock that hat.

  2. laura weaver
    July 10, 2013 / 3:41 pm

    I have a quick question for you Vanessa. Would you wear something different if you were going to the track after opening day?

  3. July 15, 2013 / 10:06 am

    Hi Laura,
    The Del Mar Races are famous for diversity in attire. You will see someone in shorts and flip flops next to a maxi dress and large hat any day of the week. Generally more people dress up for Opening day, but that does not mean people are not sporting dresses and heels on other days. A good rule of thumb, dress for a day wedding on Opening day and dress for brunch with friends on the other days. Hope this helps!

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