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GLAMOROUS Michelle Harkin had a lucky break in more ways than one when she won the “Best Hat Competition” on Ladies’ Day at Redcar Races on Saturday (JUNE 24).

Michelle, who’d travelled from her home in Grimsby for the big day, was originally due to wear a self-made blue hat.
But when she tripped over the settee at home and broke her toe, it meant she had to make a last-minute change and create a hat to match the only pair of shoes she could walk in.

“The whole thing was an accident. There was only one pair of shoes I could get on my foot so I had to come up with a new hat matching the leopard-skin design,” she explained.

Michelle only came to Redcar because her husband Michael had gone to a stag party in Liverpool.

“I thought if he’s going to have a day out, so am I,” said Michelle. “We looked around to see what was on and Ladies’ Day at Redcar seemed like a good idea.”

It certainly was because Michelle scooped an array of prizes supplied by the Ladies’ Day sponsors Market Cross Jewellers, Chic Hats, and Orange Kerr Hair and Beauty.

The “Best Dress Lady Competition” winner was Stacey Simpson, of Redcar, who wore a pink and white hand-made high-waist pencil skirt with a Bardot top and a bespoke Fascination hat.

“I can’t believe I’ve won ¬– I’m in complete shock,” said Stacey, who goes on to represent Redcar in a Go Racing In Yorkshire version of the competition.

She also won an expensive collection of prizes

Redcar enjoyed a bumper crowd for one of its premier meetings of the year but gusty winds meant it was difficult for ladies to hang on to their hats.

“It hasn’t been easy but I’ve survived intact and it’s been a really fabulous day,” said Stacey.

Another sponsor, Betty Leigh Boutique of Redcar, staged a fashion show in the winner’s enclosure after the second race.

Boutique owner Vicky Smee said: “The ladies of the area have turned out in force in some amazing outfits and it’s lovely to see so many people dressing up for the occasion.”