All eyes will be on Rosehill Gardens this Saturday - on and off the track.
Golden Slipper Day is one of the biggest days on the Australian racing calendar with five group one races, including the $3.5 million Longines Golden Slipper, the world’s richest race for two-year-olds. 2017 marks 60 years since the first Golden Slipper race was run.
Actress Elizabeth Debicki will lead a star-studded line-up as the Longines race day ambassador. Saturday will be her first time at the races in Sydney.
“I can’t wait because it will be an exciting and historic day,” Debicki told the Sun.
“It was beautifully organic in the way it came about. When I was asked, it just so happened I would be in Australia at the same time. It’s an honour to be involved with the Australian Turf Club because I love the races so much.”
She likes the heavily backed Tulip, She Will Reign and hot favourite Houtzen in the big race. Debicki also plans to bet on Rosehill-based champion mare Winx, who hopes to extend her 15 race winning streak in the $1 million China Horse Club George Ryder Stakes.
“Coming from Melbourne, I love going to the races because it’s all about the fun and glamour,” she said. “I’m looking forward to the Longines Golden Slipper as I think there will be an exhilarating finish because there are some incredible horses in the field. It’s a unique race because of their age.”
Debicki is looking at outfit options. “Millinery is a big thing this season,” she said.
“I love a blazer thrown over a dress or a pant suit.”
Debicki is back and forth between Melbourne and Sydney on a short break.
She made her film debut in A Few Best Men before her big break in Baz Luhrmann’s 2013 hit The Great Gatsby. She won an AACTA award for the support role.
Debicki heads back to the US in May to start shooting Widows, directed by Steve McQueen. She will star alongside Liam Neeson and Oscar winner Viola Davis.
“It’s a feature film so I’ll be filming in Chicago for at least three months,” she said. “It’s funny because when you first start out in the film business, you never know where you’ll end up.”
It’s highly likely her hat or headpiece will be made by milliner Nerida Winter, who has dressed ATC race day ambassadors for 20 years.
“She can have anything she likes,” Ms Winter said. “What makes it so much fun about the races in Sydney is that you don’t have to travel. It’s a day where sport and fashion collide.”
She listed textures, layering of fabric and moody colours as the the biggest millinery trends this season. “The races are about dressing up,” Ms Winter said.
- Gates open 11am on Saturday. Details: theraces.com.au.