View Full Version : Durban July Spectacular
July 4th, 2011, 10:51 AM
Africa's greatest sporting and socal event took place this past weekend. The Vodacom Durban July. This event attracts more than 50 000 of the country's bold and beautiful to Greyville Racecourse in Durban. This event generates a massive nationwide betting spree of over R190 million n the dy with R36 million splurged on the outcome of the main race alone.
Durban has sub-tropical weather, making it warmer than the restof the country's winter weather. This makes the event more succesful, as Durban is also a great destination with lots of sight-seeing and beaches to be enjoyed.
Accommodation in Durban (http://www.southernsun.com/garden-court/south-beach/) is also very affordable, luxurious and in good proximity to most tourist attractions that people like to visit.
July 4th, 2011, 05:32 PM
Celebs, beauty, weather come to the party
July 4 2011 at 10:47am
VIVIAN ATTWOOD, BUHLE MBONAMBI AND MERVYN NAIDOO
Gorgeous Igugu ran her heart out in the climactic race at the Vodacom Durban July, and won the few remaining hearts she had not already captured.
A capacity crowd of 50 000 people screamed with one voice as she crossed the finish line a convincing winner. It was undoubtedly one of the most thrilling race days in recent memory, and no one who was anyone missed it.
From early morning a constant stream of luxury vehicles poured on to the race course, disgorging race-goers dressed (and some overdressed) in right royal regalia. Helicopters delivered A-listers, while government ministers arrived with full police escorts, sirens blaring.
Despite predictions of wind, it was a gloriously clear day without a cloud in sight. Excitement started building with the run-up to the fashion awards, as entrants strutted their stuff on the racetrack and cam- eramen vied for winning shots of beautiful women and their escorts.
At the MTV tent, the legendary Kevin Ellis, whose designs have won numerous awards at the race over the years, had opted to dress a series of moving mannequins – models in fantasy creations that unashamedly screamed “OTT”.
“The keynote for this year’s July was restrained elegance but I rather fancied pulling out all the stops and this is the result,” he said, indicating a fabulously clad Janelle Rex, in peacock coloured silk and a spectacular feathered fascinator.
Celebrities of every stripe were out in full force. Spotted at the Vodacom VIP Paddock were Miss South Africa, Bokang Montjane, Top Billing’s Jeannie D, DJ Sbu, Basetsana Kumalo and radiant Shashi Naidoo.
Montjane was attending the Durban July for the first time and said she was loving every moment.
In a slinky black satin sheath dress and her sash, Montjane said she had placed a bet on Igugu and was elated when the filly won.
Jeannie D was accompanied by her fiancé, John Fith. She looked eye-wateringly attractive in a daring black and nude Gavin Rajah bustier and micro mini.
“I love being at the Durban July!” she enthused. “It’s always a blast. The people are great, the weather, oh my word the weather is amazing, and that’s why I make sure I come back to Durban in time for the July each year.” Fith, in a Valentino suit with a Hugo Boss shirt, is also a frequent Durban July reveller.
Businesswoman Kumalo said the Durban July was always a pleasure to attend because it was one of the few times she got a break and was able to see her friends and network.
“It’s become a tradition for me. Great company, great food and great fashion are a winning combination,” she said. Kumalo wore a black Gavin Rajah creation with matching Jimmy Choo boots.
Metro FM’s DJ Sbu was dapper as usual in a C2 by Carducci suit.
“At the Durban July I work and have fun at the same time,” he said.
“It’s also great to see what the trendsetters have come up with.”
Bubbly Liezel van der Westhuizen, who presents Expresso, was in a dress made entirely of Cad- bury’s chocolate wrappers, designed by Craig Jacobs. It was also her July.
“I didn’t know it was so awesome,” she said.
Shashi Naidoo, recently voted the sexiest woman in the world by FHM, attended without her husband. Wearing a supremely flattering yet simple soft pink dress by Pallu, she said the Durban July was an excellent excuse to party.
“I don’t know anything about horses, but my gran said I must bet on number 11 (The Apache) and 20 (Super Storm)” he said beforehand.
Irvin Khoza, Happy Ntshingila, Bobby Motaung and Roy Padayachee were sipping fine champagne and nibbling on canapés with Vodacom CEO Romeo Kumalo. Government spokesman Jimmy Manyi was accompanied by his wife Stella.
LIVE presenter Minnie Dlamini sported a cheeky outfit comprising a red bustier and lace hot pants, with lacy gloves and a pert red hat by Diamond Face Couture.
“My designer, Uyanda Mbuli, came up with this ensemble,” she said.
When hot-pot favourite Igugu hit the finish line, a huge roar of approval reverberated around Greyville as scores of excited punters made their feelings known.
Mark van Dyk, who wagered R200 on the three-year-old Australian-bred filly to run away with top honours in SA’s premier horse race, leapt into the air when she did.
“I was standing in the queue not sure where to put my money, but another punter told me he would refund my money if Igugu was beaten,” Van Dyk said. “I’m glad I took his advice. Now I have some extra cash to splash at tonight’s after-party,” said the occasional racegoer, who drove from Joburg.
Ravi Pillay from Chatsworth said he needed little convincing about the chances of Sheikh Mohammed Bin Khalifa’s horse breezing to victory on the 2 200m trip.
“My mind was made up three weeks ago that Igugu would win the July,” Pillay revealed.
“I bet R500 on this horse to win and I also won R1 838 for landing 50 percent of quartet (predicting the first four horses past the post). It has been a good day for me.”
But the result of the main race was not music to the ears of bookmakers, who had to contend with long payout lines after Igugu romped home to victory.
“There has been a steady flow of cash on Igugu since betting opened for the July. It was a bad result for the bookies,” said Ronald Rowley, an on-course bookmaker.
Predictions for the day’s takings, which saw snaking queues at portable ATM machines, put the figure at R36 million in bets on the main race alone. Total takings countrywide are expected to top R200m.
As night fell and the crowds began to thin, fashionistas hobbled back to their cars, stiletto heels in hand. Pain in the name of high style is a small price to pay to see and be seen at the July.
But in the opulent marquees in Tent City, the party was just beginning and the champagne flowed freely for the hoi poloi. In Durban, it really is about who you know.
July 4th, 2011, 05:41 PM
I must say that I was astounded at how big the event was this year. Tent City spread much further into the golf course this year than ever before.
Durban July a royal occasion
SUTHENTIRA GOVENDER and SUBASHNI NAIDOO
03 July, 2011 21:15
The sport of kings has staged a show fit for royalty at the Durban July. Organisers promised a royal occasion and that's what more than 55000 guests got - even if it came at a price.
Celebrities descended on Greyville and among those spotted were soccer supremo Danny Jordaan, first lady Thobeka Zuma and movie mogul Anant Singh.
With the sun shining on South Africa's playground capital, punters shrugged off the economic blues, wagering more than R120-million on the day.
And many were happy to spend up to R2500 for a ticket to the marquees where R3000 bottles of champagne popped long into the night.
Top chefs kept the hordes happy with fine cuisine. Andrew Druiper of Harveys showed off his prowess with crayfish towers and frozen flower arrangements draped with oysters.
"This year certainly had the wow factor," said Druiper. "Guests at the Sharks marquee were spoiled with an African feast with topless barmen and praise-singers, while the Maison Blanc marquee opted for French-inspired dishes with tons of sushi," he said.
The event saw the July reclaim some of its lost magic. Veterans believed the R3-million horseracing spectacular "got its groove back" this year - evidenced by the influx of A-list celebrities, top-class entertainment and bigger corporate budgets.
Media spokesman Dave Macleod agreed the event had regained its sparkle.
"This year the demand for tickets started a lot earlier than ever before, and for the first time there was a very real possibility that the tickets would all be sold out before race day."
Macleod said the buzz in Johannesburg, for instance, had been "huge".
"Gold Circle had to put in place a new system to sell advance tickets and have them couriered to people in Gauteng."
An estimated R500-million flowed into the regional economy - with R8.5-million generated by ticket sales alone.
On the fashion front, organisers tapped into this year's two big royal weddings, inviting subtle, chic and stylish interpretations on the theme "a right royal affair".
Cleavage was on display as models vied for the judges' eyes in the fashion competitions - one of the cornerstones of the July.
Cleopatra, Marie Antoinette, Cinderella and Indian princesses inspired most designers on race day. Over-the-top hats encrusted with beads and crystals, tight bodices, lace and rich royal colours added style and colour.
Durban designer Zeenath Arbee borrowed from Cinderella with a unique hat featuring a fairy godmother and a glass slipper.
Arbee designed a three-dimensional wired crown for the bodice which she said was "one of a kind".
Another eye-catching design was Janine Dollery's outfit, created with recycled material from Mango airline. "I collected the boarding passes for the corset and used the plastic for the skirt," she said.
Striking model Clarissa Rampali wore pictures of Kate Middleton and Prince William on her chest and handbag in a creation by designer Yasmin Saanglae.
Veteran designer Kevin Ellis - who has previously scooped a number of design awards at the July - enthused about the excitement.
"Classic returned to the July this year. Women love dressing up with hats and gloves, beautiful tailored two-piece suits ... that's how race day used to be in terms of fashion ... but this year classic elegance was reunited with the July."
Ellis hosted a fashion and dance extravaganza at the MTV Base marquee, which featured burlesque dancers, a Marie Antoinette-themed fashion show and a lingerie showcase.
July 5th, 2011, 11:47 AM
Wonder if anyone took ariel pics of the course on Saturday
July 8th, 2011, 11:26 PM
Didn't take aerial pics, but before I flew out to Jhb at 5pm en route to the US, I did take out some ground pics. :)
Here are some of them (better late than never)....
The pimped out MTV tent
July 11th, 2011, 10:51 AM
awesome pics Jerome!
July 21st, 2011, 02:12 PM
Thanks for sharing those beautiful photos with us. They embody the beauty of the whole event. You can see how spectacular the whole event is, it's in the colorful clothes, extravagant hats and smiles. We can also see how large the attending crowd was.
Justin Hartley-Accommodation in Durban (http://www.southernsun.com/garden-court/south-beach)
July 21st, 2011, 02:21 PM
Do you mind not having random adverts in your posts.. you've been told about this before.