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Each year during the height of the Cape Town summer, thousands of horse racing enthusiasts, glamazons, celebrities and curious people-watchers descend on the Kenilworth Race Course for a day of fashion and fun. If you’re new to The Sun Met, here’s everything you need to know about South Africa’s most renowned social, fashion and sporting event.

What is The Sun Met?

It’s the biggest horse racing event of the summer season in which South Africa’s top race horses compete for a purse of R5 million. Since the first official running of The Metropolitan Mile (later shortened to ‘The Met’) in 1883, the event has been a highlight of the social calendar. Every year on the last Saturday in January, Africa’s richest horse race draws over 50 000 people to the Kenilworth Racecourse.

The Sun Met

What to expect

While tradition and equestrian pageantry may be central to the historic horse race, The Sun Met (formerly the J&B Met) has become synonymous with decadent glamour. Here, fashion, celebrities and high-stakes betting meet in a sophisticated and exhilarating spectacle to celebrate the grace and speed of South Africa’s top racehorses.

Depending on your tickets, you might choose to spend the day in the comfort of an air-conditioned suite, catching the trackside action from the balcony or watching the replays on screens. If you’re up for exploring, the Winner’s Circle is a great spot to see the champion thoroughbreds up close after each running. Plus, with stalls, beer gardens, food trucks and more on offer, there’s plenty to keep you entertained on race day.

Dressing up

In the spirit of glamorous fun, The Sun Met has an annual theme. The 2017 theme was “Decades of Glamour” and thousands of spectators took part in the festivities by dressing up in the fashions from their chosen decade. The Best Dressed Couple award went to model and blogger Abongwe Qokela and fashion influencer, Anesu Chogugudza who based their winning 1950s-inspired look on the TV series Mad Men.

The horses

An important contest, The Sun Met puts South Africa’s top racehorses on an even footing and features an honour roll which includes many of South Africa’s most famous thoroughbreds, such as Ariel, Pocket Power, Wolf Power, Model Man, Empress Club, London News and Horse Chestnut. This year, Whisky Baron surprised punters by beating crowd favourite Legal Eagle to the finish line to claim the Sun Met celebrated with Mumm title race, and with it, the R5 million winner’s purse.

Make it a day at the races

Join thousands of lavishly dressed spectators in January 2018 as they descend on the historic Kenilworth Racecourse for a day of decadent glamour, exciting celebrity sightings and thrilling horse racing action. Be part of the who’s who of racecourse glamour with our 2018 Sun Met packages, which give you access to exclusive Pegasus Hospitality to watch the races from the comfort of a VIP luxury lounge. There’s no better way to experience The Sun Met than in glamorous style and sumptuous comfort!

Your 2018 Sun Met tickets also include your accommodation in Cape Town, but we can easily add on your flights and any additional excursions in and around the Mother City. Contact us today about our 2018 Sun Met packages.

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