Inside the Queen’s love of horses, from riding without helmet to fortune from race wins

Whilethe Queen may be known for her regal etiquette, stunning jewels and lavish palaces, away from the glitz and glamour of royal life, Her Majesty is perhaps most comfortable when out and about with her horses.

The 95 year old, who was reportedly forced to stop riding back in 2021, is hugely passionate about the animals and isoften seen at occasions such as Royal Ascot andthe Royal Windsor Horse Show.

And as fellow family members like Princess Anne, Zara Tindall andLady Louise Windsor have all shown a similar interest for equines, it’s clearly something that runs in the family.

With all eyes on the Grand National today, the team atBritish Racecourses have done some digging into the Queen’s love for the animals.

So, here’s everything you need to know about Her Majesty’s special interest…

She’s famous for not wearing a helmet

Though reports suggest that the Queen is no longer able to ride, the monarch previously raised concerns over her seeming refusal to wear a helmet.

According toThe Telegraph, trainer Ian Balding expressed his worry and once told her: “I really think it is ridiculous that you above all others do not wear a crash helmet.”

However, she reportedly replied: “I never have–and you don’t have to have your hair done like I do.”

Instead of wearing a helmet, the Queen likes to opt for some lavish Hermès scarfs.

She has several race horses

After receiving her first Shetland pony, Peggy, when she was young, Her Majesty has owned various horses throughout the years.

In fact, when her father passed away in 1952, she inherited his range of breeding and racing stock.

It’s not known exactly how many horses she has owned over time but in June 2020, she revealed some of her favourite horses for aspecial edition of Horse & Hound magazine.

She explained that one of her favourite horses was called Burmese who’d been her allocated horse during Trooping the Colour celebrations until 1987.

She knows a thing or two about racing

As an avid horse rider herself, the Queen clearly knows what a good race horse looks like.

Thanks to her passion, as of 2013, horses owned by the monarch had won over 1600 races.

In fact, she’s had winners in all of the British Classics except the Grand National.

Despite the Grand National being a huge event in the sporting calendar, the equine lover is reported to prefer the Royal Ascot where her horses have won on 71 occasions.

With an incredible amount of wins under her belt, she has made a whopping £7.6million in winnings alone.

Speaking of the Queen’s skill, the Queen’s racing manager John Warren told Horse & Hound: “To deal with the constant challenges and disappointments, as all horse people will know, the greatest asset you need to have with horses is patience – which luckily The Queen has in spades.”

She has a close friendship with ‘The Horse Whisperer’

Monty Roberts, or The Horse Whisperer as he is also known, has helped to train Her Majesty's horses since 1989.

Renowned for his gentle ways of connecting with the animals, Penny Junor, in her 2005 book 'The Firm', wrote that the Queen and the late Queen Motherwere deeply moved by his work after he showed them his technique .

She said: “The Queen was profoundly affected by what she had seen and had plenty of questions about why the horses had behaved as they had.”

Meanwhile, the Queen Mother was reportedly left with “tears streaming down her face”.

As a thank you for his work, the Queen made him an honorary member of the Royal Victorian Order.

But away from work, the two share a close bond and she even named one of her beloved corgis after him.

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