The Jockey Club said it would end formal dress rules on all its courses to make horse racing more “accessible and inclusive”.
The rule covers all 15 club venues and fans must now “dress as they feel most comfortable and confident”.
The change takes place with immediate effect and follows a review of dress codes and feedback from racing fans.
Racecourses which fall under the jurisdiction of the Jockey Club include Aintree, Carlisle, Haydock Park, Epsom Downs, Kempton Park, Sandown Park, Huntingdon, Market Rasen, Newmarket, Nottingham, Cheltenham, Exeter, Warwick, The Jockey Club Rooms and Wincanton.
Explaining the decision, Nevin Truesdale, General Manager of the Jockey Club, said: “Horse riding has always been a sport enjoyed by people from all walks of life and it’s really important to us to be accessible and inclusive.
“We hope that by no longer placing expectations on people about what they should and shouldn’t wear, we can help underline that running is truly for everyone.
“For those who visit our sites, a day at the races is about spending quality time off with friends and family and we believe people have more fun when they feel relaxed. A big part of that is wear clothes you are comfortable in.
“While the Jockey Club has a rich heritage and history, it is also a forward-thinking organization that emphasizes diversity and inclusion and always seeks to reflect modern trends.
“So when we looked at this area of the running experience, it became clear to us that enforcing a dress code seems rather outdated in the 21st century to many of our running enthusiasts.
“Of course, that doesn’t mean we discourage people from dressing up for a day at the races if they want to. It’s about giving people the choice and the opportunity to come and race dressed how they feel. more comfortable and confident, while keeping in mind the challenges that the British weather regularly presents!”
Truesdale added that although the Jockey Club is making this change in 2023, there have already been a significant number of meets where dress codes have not been in place.