Friday 2 December 2016

Brendan Courtney: The aim is to be sexually attractive at Aintree and that's a worry

Published 08/04/2016 | 07:58

Horse Racing - Crabbie's Grand National Festival - Aintree Racecourse - 7/4/16
Horse Racing - Crabbie's Grand National Festival - Aintree Racecourse - 7/4/16
A female racegoer arrives during the Grand Opening Day of the Crabbie's Grand National Festival at Aintree Racecourse, Liverpool. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Thursday April 7, 2016. Photo: Peter Byrne/PA Wire
A female racegoer arrives during the Grand Opening Day of the Crabbie's Grand National Festival at Aintree Racecourse, Liverpool. Picture date: Thursday April 7, 2016. Photo: Mike Egerton/PA Wire
A racegoer arrives for the first day of races at Aintree
A female racegoer arrives during the Grand Opening Day of the Crabbie's Grand National Festival at Aintree Racecourse, Liverpool. Picture date: Thursday April 7, 2016. Photo: Mike Egerton/PA Wire
A female racegoer arrives during the Grand Opening Day of the Crabbie's Grand National Festival at Aintree Racecourse, Liverpool. PPicture date: Thursday April 7, 2016. Photo: Mike Egerton/PA Wire
A female racegoer arrives during the Grand Opening Day of the Crabbie's Grand National Festival at Aintree Racecourse, Liverpool. Picture date: Thursday April 7, 2016. Photo: Mike Egerton/PA Wire

It was all about the short skirts and dodgy fake tan as the Grand National Festival kicked off with a bang.

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But leading Irish fashion guru Brendan Courtney said the style on show at the Liverpool racecourse yesterday was "shocking".

The co-owner of Lennon Courtney told the Herald that the over-the-top style on show was a "sexualisation of women".

But he said he loves the "spectacle" that is the festival at Aintree.

Brendan Courtney
Brendan Courtney

"It's shocking, but I enjoy it - and the festival does look like good craic," he said. "I think the over sexualisation of women is passe and I always find it a little disappointing that young women do it to themselves - it's almost anti- feminist.

"Some will say it's not, and that they are doing what they like with their own bodies, but the aim is to be sexually attractive and that's a worry."

A female racegoer arrives during the Grand Opening Day of the Crabbie's Grand National Festival at Aintree Racecourse, Liverpool. PPicture date: Thursday April 7, 2016. Photo: Mike Egerton/PA Wire
A female racegoer arrives during the Grand Opening Day of the Crabbie's Grand National Festival at Aintree Racecourse, Liverpool. PPicture date: Thursday April 7, 2016. Photo: Mike Egerton/PA Wire

Courtney, who has a Dunnes Stores fashion range with business partner Sonya Lennon, knows a thing or two about Ladies Days, having visited 30 racing festivals as part of an RTE documentary.

"I'm a bit uncomfortable with the idea of Ladies Day because I think it creates competition among women, which doesn't give a very positive message," he said.

A female racegoer arrives during the Grand Opening Day of the Crabbie's Grand National Festival at Aintree Racecourse, Liverpool. Photo: Mike Egerton/PA Wire
A female racegoer arrives during the Grand Opening Day of the Crabbie's Grand National Festival at Aintree Racecourse, Liverpool. Photo: Mike Egerton/PA Wire

"But I have learned that most women go for the fashion and the family aspect. It does get more people out to the races so that is a good thing."

A female racegoer arrives during the Grand Opening Day of the Crabbie's Grand National Festival at Aintree Racecourse, Liverpool. Picture date: Thursday April 7, 2016. Photo: Mike Egerton/PA Wire
A female racegoer arrives during the Grand Opening Day of the Crabbie's Grand National Festival at Aintree Racecourse, Liverpool. Picture date: Thursday April 7, 2016. Photo: Mike Egerton/PA Wire
Coleen Rooney arrives for the the Grand Opening Day of the Crabbie's Grand National Festival at Aintree Racecourse, Liverpool
Coleen Rooney arrives for the the Grand Opening Day of the Crabbie's Grand National Festival at Aintree Racecourse, Liverpool
A female racegoer arrives during the Grand Opening Day of the Crabbie's Grand National Festival at Aintree Racecourse, Liverpool. Picture date: Thursday April 7, 2016. Photo: Mike Egerton/PA Wire
A female racegoer arrives during the Grand Opening Day of the Crabbie's Grand National Festival at Aintree Racecourse, Liverpool. Picture date: Thursday April 7, 2016. Photo: Mike Egerton/PA Wire

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