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Tuesday, 12 June, 2001, 18:04 GMT 19:04 UK
Kitted out for Royal Ascot
It's hats all round in the Royal Enclosure at Ascot
It's hats all round in the Royal Enclosure at Ascot
As well as offering top class flat racing, with Group One races on each of the four days, Royal Ascot also brings out the best and most elaborate fashions.

It has become one of those sporting events that not only is it worth seeing but also it's worth being seen at.

The competition off the track is almost as intense as that on it.

So in case you are Ascot bound this summer BBC Sport Online brings you the lowdown on which items of clothing you should use or lose from your wardrobe.

Well, if you are heading for the Silver Ring then you can take a sigh of relief and not worry about having to compete with the rest.

This lady gets into Ascot, but the chap dressed on her hat may struggle
This lady gets into Ascot, but the chap dressed on her hat may struggle
In this area there are no dress restrictions.

However, if you want to watch from the Grandstand Enclosure then you will have to smarten up your act.

In general most people attending Royal Ascot take the opportunity to put on their best clothes.

Not surprisingly jeans, shorts and singlets are not appropriate, with gentlemen encouraged to wear either a suit or a jacket and tie.

Many ladies opt to wear hats in the Grandstand so as to fit in with many of their peers, but it's not obligatory.

If you have the undoubted pleasure of watching from the Royal Enclosure then a real effort will have to be made.

Ladies are asked to wear formal day dress with a hat covering the crown of the head.

Only black or grey morning dress with the top hat or service dress is acceptable for Gentlemen.

But overseas visitors are welcome to wear the national dress of their country.

So now you know what is acceptable and what's not there's no excuses for leaving the decisions on what to wear until the last minute.

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