Hats & Horses will take place on Saturday October 26 in Palma, Mallorca. Archive photo. | S. GARCIA


Picture this: A large gathering of well dressed men and women give out a collective cheer as a flurry of horses fly past them. The crowd complete with top hats and tails, heels and high couture, champagne flutes and binoculars, all craning their necks to get a glimpse of these magnificent animals as they race for the finish line. Sounds like a typical day out at Ascot or Epsom, doesnt it?

Now swap the (probable) rain and cold air for blue skies and sun, and the saddle for a harness. Welcome to Hats and Horses - Spanish style!

Ariadna Vilata, 40, originally from The Pyrennes and married to an Englishman told the British press recently about her love of English culture, (and it doesnt get more English than a day at the races) and how this love inspired her to launch Hats and Horses- a day of relaxed racing luxury in the Balearic Islands.

After discovering cross cultural similarities between English traditions and those from her own village, she decided there was an oppourtunity to bring this cultural experience to the Spanish masses and after 1,000 people attended in the first year in Minorca, the sky is surely the limit for this veritable Spanish Ascot. And so on Saturday October 26 at 10.00am this fun and colourful equine delight will come to Palma de Mallorca for the first time.

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Ariadna is hoping the move to Palma will bring a new 'personality' to the race! She explained how Minorca brought its own character to this event and now its the turn of Majorca. "The Majorca environment brings the idea of sea, summer, good weather… into the event," she told the British press.

The jockeys will be riding in the Spanish tradition of trotting, which sees them sitting in a small carriage behind the horse, being pulled along at speed.

I'd advise you to get your own speed skates on and go to www.hatsandhorses.com for more info. The Bulletin is also offering a special discount to readers, a VIP ticket for 65 euros, call 971 788 405 for reservations.

And they´re off...