When the opportunity for us to send budding PA Penelope Alice to a horse racing event with the PA Life Club cropped up, she felt she needed to go. When she found out it was taking place in a hospitality box at the Royal Windsor Racecourse, she told us, she must go! Read her story about the day that she and the other PAs had.
The day started by meeting a team of PAs at Waterloo station under the big clock. I must admit we stood out in our posh frocks. It drew the kindest compliments from strangers walking past, telling us how lovely we looked.
The train to Windsor gave us time to catch up and meet each other a bit better. Many of the ladies knew each other from previous trips. We are a friendly bunch and even those new to the group got involved and we all had a very upbeat journey, excited for what lay ahead.
Upon arrival in the beautiful and historic town of Windsor, we had a quick 200yard walk to a lovely little riverboat. It felt like a little part of New Orleans had arrived in this quiet British town. It was a lovely open top boat that allowed us to see some of the finest houses along the riverside that Windsor had to offer.
On the short boat ride, we found out that Windsor racecourse is situated on an island, which is surrounded by the river Thames. If we wish to return, we could take the two hour trip around the island by boat, but on this occasion, we had not traveled to Windsor for the river, but for the racing.
After the boat had docked, we were greeted by a quite terrific statue of two gallant horses. It was a sign that we had arrived at the right place.
We entered the gates and were escorted through a paddock filled with different foods and a merry folk sounding bands. It was all in keeping with the spirits of the event. Only a minute later we arrived at a lovely building, where we went upstairs to our room.
The room was a delightful hospitality box, with traditional table settings, a manned bar in the corner and a balcony that faced the finish line. It really was the finest view of the racetrack I could have imagined.
The suite came with a professional tipster, for us, it was Ex-Professional jockey Colin Brown. He was a brilliant sport. Funny, clever and a joy to us all. He introduced himself and talked us through how the betting works. It was all a bit of fun, whilst a complimentary glass of fizz in hand.
Before any racing had started, Colin took us on a tour of the venue, including the weighing room, which is located in the same building as the jockey changing room.
He then showed us around the course, including the parade, where we could see the horses before they raced and the starting gates. It was very exciting to be so close to the action.
Moments before the racing started we arrived back into the hospitality suite. We were treated to a lovely meal and some more fizz. All very exciting and fun, we were encouraged to put a bet on and we all had fun doing so.
There were 8 races over the evening, it was very thrilling and kept us out of our seats. I don’t think that any of us could have expected the levels of fun and enjoyment we ended up having. It really was a grand evening.
After the racing was over, the night carried on. We entertainment for the latter half of the evening was a fabulous Take That tribute band called ‘The Take That Experience’. It was enough for us to get some more fizz and dance the night away.
It was a lovely event, that I would encourage people to take part next time. The venue covers a different event every Monday throughout the racing season.