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Royal Ascot 2022: The most extravagant hats at the horse racing event

What do horse racing fans and milliners have in common? They both love the Royal Ascot, of course, one of the biggest events of the year for horse racing.

While the event is centred on the equine sport, it is also a stage for hat-lovers to come and show off their headgear – the more gravity-defying, the better.

Hats are part of the women’s dress code at the Royal Ascot, which allows headpieces with a “solid base of four inches or more in diameter” as an alternative to a hat, but does not allow fascinators.

This year’s Royal Ascot comes amid the first heatwave of the year, with the Met Office predicting temperatures of up to 34C on Friday.

While the event is usually attended by the Queen, whose love for horses is well-documented, Her Majesty has missed both the first and second day at the races.

However, other members of the royal family including the Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall have made appearances, as well as the Earl and Countess of Wessex, and Princess Beatrice and her husband Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi.

We rounded up our favourite, most eye-catching hats at this year’s Royal Ascot.

Classic Camilla

Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall arrives into the parade ring in the royal carriage as she attends Royal Ascot 2022

(Getty Images)

Kicking off the list on a muted, but no less regal note is Camilla, who donned a bright blue jacket and skirt, with a matching blue hat. The wide-brimmed hat featured a blue rose and long ribbons that gave the future Queen Consort a rather jaunty look.

Gallopin’ Gear

Rachel Ellis Oates arriving ahead of racing on day two of Royal Ascot at Ascot Racecourse


Now on to the real event – the horses on this hat, of course. Milliner Rachel Ellis Oates’ multi-coloured headpiece, created with dozens of different-sized horse cutouts, is truly worthy of the Royal Ascot. Yee-haw.

Feathery Friends

Vivienne Jenner arrives ahead of day two of Royal Ascot at Ascot Racecourse


Plenty of pheasant feathers make up this rather extravagant hat, complete with plenty of bright pink ruffles.

Orange You Glad You Met Me?

Susan Bender Whitfield arrives, on the second day of of the Royal Ascot horserace meeting


Susan Bender Whitfield, a creative director, stylist and contributing editor for British Vogue, opted for a shockingly-bright orange number. The refreshing has been seen all over the high street as the colour of the summer, so it’s no surprise that Whitfield’s feathery hat is bang on trend.

Tulle-y, Madly, Deeply

Racegoer Alexandra Bertram during day two of Royal Ascot at Ascot Racecourse


A turquoise tutu on one’s head? Why not? It is the Royal Ascot, after all.


Alexandra Strudwick attends Royal Ascot 2022

(Getty Images)

Alexandra Strudwick, whose family owns the Ballygallon Stud farm, appeared at the racing event in a sculptural hat that towered high above her head.

Struck By Lightning

A racegoer arrives ahead of day two of Royal Ascot at Ascot Racecourse


This giant multi-coloured bow is a thing to behold. Paired with the bright yellow lightning earring, it’s a look we’re envious of.

Dizzy Blooms

Maya Jama attends Royal Ascot 2022 at Ascot Racecourse

(Getty Images for Royal Ascot)

Maya Jama’s Royal Ascot look is sheer floral joy. Her headpiece, which features blossoms that appear to be floating around her head, pairs perfectly with her bright pink gown.

Garden In A Teacup

A view hat worn by a racegoer, on the second day of of the Royal Ascot horserace meeting


This teacup bursting forth with flowers is exactly the kind of Royal Ascot hat content we need to see. 10/10, no notes.

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