The eThekwini Municipality says security has been tightened ahead of the Hollywoodbets Durban July on Saturday.
Over 35 000 people are expected to attend the premier horseracing event. This is the first time in two years that the prestigious race is welcoming punters and fashionistas to physically attend following the COVID-19 lockdown regulations.
The Durban July Handicap, Africa’s premier horseracing event used to attract over 50 000 revelers before the COVID-19 Lockdown outbreak. The eThekwini municipality says the event is expected to contribute more than R300 million to the local economy.
— Hollywoodbets Durban July (@HWBDurbanJuly) July 1, 2022
SA’s fashion talent
This year’s theme ‘Show Me The Honey’ is expected to showcase SA’s fashion talent from top designers and emerging ones. Fashion designers say they welcome the opportunity to physically showcase their work during the race.
Ndoni fashion designer Kwenzi Nkomo says the premier horse-racing event gives upcoming designers a platform to show their creativity.
Nkomo says the previous two years have been hard for all artists
“We’re expecting people from different provinces to be able to see our work. Some of them don’t even know about us. So for us, it’s a great platform and opportunity for us to showcase our work. Hollywoodbets also has sponsored us as upcoming designers. Golden Circle is paying us as invited designers for the show so that for us is something very big and it’s something we really appreciate especially since we haven’t been able to do business for the past two years.”
In an effort to bolster the township economy and to bring the Durban July to the township and semi-rural areas in the province, event organisers have chosen satellite venues in five townships. These areas will have betting machines and host revelers as well as visitors who will also dress up in line with the DBN July theme.
Maqaqa Exclusive Lifestyle CEO Hlengiwe Ngwabe explains:
“We are busy with the preparations today. Since it’s Friday we will be having a pre-party and tomorrow we will be having the main event. So since we are the satellite site our aim is to actually bring all the action that happens at the Greyville racecourse to Maqaqa exclusive lifestyle where we will be having people coming in dressed up with the theme and also having to run a few competitions and also we were fortunate enough to have two betting machines for the horse race.”
Law enforcement agencies deployed
Meanwhile, eThekwini Mayor Mxolisi Kaunda says law enforcement agencies have been deployed around the city.
“There is a joint operation which includes all our law-enforcement agencies they’ve surveyed the area they are ready to execute their duties. Unfortunately, we can’t give you the number of Police that will be involved because we need to keep that with us and we want to ascertain that we have hosted major events in the city without even a single incident.”
Golden circle says punters have already started putting their money on their favourite horse.