Off to the Races at the Breeder’s Cup

The Breeders’ Cup is an annual series of Grade I thoroughbred horse races, with a rotating location in North America. Besides the Kentucky Derby, Preakness, and Belmont, it is generally the highest attended race and a prestigious event in its own right. I was lucky enough to attend this year’s festivities, held November 3-4 at the Del Mar racetrack. Located about 20 miles north of San Diego, it’s “where the surf meets the turf”.

is the breeder's cup worth attending

Where to Stay

There are plenty of hotels in actual Del Mar, but it’s just as easy to stay in San Diego or La Jolla and take the train up. That way you can Rosé all day at the track and have a safe ride home after the race. We chose to perch at the lovely La Jolla Shores hotel, right on the beach.

is the la jolla shores hotel a good place to stay for the Breeder's Cup in Del Mar
Photo credit La Jolla Shores Hotel.

The Breeder’s Cup Race

My husband and I arrived at the track Saturday around 10am. We went bright and early to enjoy the numerous races throughout the day. I absolutely loved the atmosphere with its sense of excitement and anticipation all day long. It was easy to get completely swept up in the energy of the event, even if you’re not an avid racing fan. It was truly one of the best weekend getaways of the year.

We lucked out and were related to the owner of one of the competing horses. So, we had killer seats in the owner’s box, complete with a server for all our food and watering needs. Needless-to-say, we thoroughly enjoyed ourselves and got in a little family time to boot.

is it worth attending the Breeder's Cup horse race

What to Wear

This event is a bit more laid back than other, stuffier races, and the fashion of the day reflected that California, easy-going mentality. While it wasn’t uncommon to see ladies dressed to the nines with traditional intricate fascinators and giant bright hats, it was just as acceptable to wear a more everyday headpiece, like my black hat.

I paired it with a classic cowl neck lace dress. I then dressed it up a bit with vintage ankle strap leopard heels and a long gold necklace. My hubby wore a hilarious tie he found on Amazon called “bringing up the rear”. It had horse back sides on it, for which he received a plethora of compliments throughout the day. He actually had the tie for the FEI World Cup Finals held in our home base of Omaha earlier this year. He also chose to wear khakis, a button up shirt, and a sport jacket with loafers.

how to you dress to attend the Breeder's Cup

Overall, we had a fabulous day sipping Whispering Angel rosé, watching the races, and soaking in the atmosphere at this world-famous event. The people watching was amazing, too! I even spotted a few of my favorite celebs. Therefore, I highly recommend checking it out, even if you aren’t educated on the sport. There were so many friendly neighbors who were so excited to share their knowledge with me. I truly felt connected to the racing community. What a cool trip and great experience!

Now is the time to be plotting your 2018 travel calendar. Seriously consider attending the Breeder’s Cup next year at the hallowed Churchill Downs in Louisville, Kentucky the first weekend of November. You won’t regret it!

Be sure to follow La Jolla Shores Hotel @ljshoreshotel, @breederscup, and @thewhisperingangel on instagram!

Have you ever attended the Breeders’ Cup, Triple Crown, or even a local horse race?

A Minnesota native, Katy now calls Omaha her “homaha”. Her passions include philanthropy, travel, cooking, her two black labs Molly & Murph, her new hubby Skip, wine, volunteering, and spending time up north at her lake home.