The organisers of the Vodacom Durban July to be run on Saturday 3 July 2021 have unveiled the theme that will influence the racing, fashion and social aspects of the iconic raceday, alluding to a deeper underlying sentiment that unifies the horseracing industry.

The theme “Birds of a Feather” will excite the fashionistas and socialites as it offers a myriad of inspiration touchpoints for designers and decorators, as it invites them to explore the plumage of Africa’s birds.

But as Gold Circle Marketing Director Stephen Marshall points out, there is a powerful underlying message in the theme that speaks to the tenacity of the key players in the racing industry that is determined to deal with the current challenges.

“The Vodacom Durban July is a truly unique South African sporting and social occasion in the way that it unifies the nation and draws people together from all walks of life,” he said.

“Where this theme resonates with the horseracing industry is the way it unpacks how all the role players have been able to work together to ensure that the industry and all its key events have been able to keep going through a challenging year when so many others have fallen by the wayside.

“Like birds of a feather flocking together, the theme vividly describes the role that every person passionate about horse racing has played, from the owners, jockeys, trainers and grooms to the punters and the fans, in keeping racing alive.

“We were proud that this tenacity and determination allowed the Vodacom Durban July to be the first major event to be staged when the country was under the hard lockdown last year, and it provided a beacon of hope during those tough times.

Marshall said the theme will ensure that the raceday on the first Saturday of July will be memorable and spectacular, and said he was really looking forward to seeing the manner in which designers and fashionistas approached the “Birds of a Feather” theme.

“As a stylish and prestigious event, followers of the Vodacom Durban July enjoy delving into the theme and steer away from interpretations of the theme that are too literal,” added Marshall.

“This theme has a deep and profound meaning for those close to the horseracing industry and I am sure that there will be interesting fresh takes on the theme that reflect how working together we can deal with just about any challenge.

“In the same way as the theme concludes, we look forward to bringing the 2021 Vodacom Durban July to every corner of the world to “embrace this glorious raceday”,” he concluded.


Brightly patterned jockeys,
As light as a feather.
Ride thoroughbred horses,
That run hell-for-leather.

Hawk-eyed trainers,
Unruffled or in a flap!
Chat to silks-matching owners,
Revisit the plan! Recap!

Dedicated grooms,
Their charges parade.
As proud as peacocks,
A new hero will be made.

Hatch a plan with fashionable friends,
Consider mythology rising!
Explore the plumage of Africa’s birds,
Take flight with colours mesmerizing!

Like birds of a feather, they flock together,
Each in their own unique way,
Migrating from all corners of the world,
To embrace this glorious raceday.

The Vodacom Durban July
Africa’s Greatest Horseracing Event