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Queen Elizabeth II: the passionate horsewoman

HM Queen riding Burmese. Credit Leonard Bentley @ Flickr https://www.flickr.com/photos/31363949@N02/5848129740

Yesterday the news broke that Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II had passed away. This was incredibly sad news and you can feel the impact of her death everywhere in the UK right now. TV and Radio changed their broadcasting, sports delayed or cancelled, and heartfelt messages have been shared everywhere. Even Twitter seemed to struggle to keep up with the spike in posts.

The Queen was a fantastic ruler. She was our longest ever ruling monarch and has seen thte country, and the world, go through so many changes. An interesting fact I heard yesterday was that thanks to the common wealth, she was essentially head of 1/3 of the world. Despite this huge responsibilty, she never missed an opportunity to show her humour, taking part in a James Bond skit for the 2012 Olympics and a cute short film with Paddington Bear for her Jubilee celebrations this year.

But to me and most of you reading this, she will be remembered as a passionate horsewoman.

The Queen, and the rest of her family, touched every area of the horse world, from Racing to Showing, and Eventing to Driving. They have supported these sports as riders, drivers, owners and breeders. I personally always thought that the Queen looked happiest at the races, especially when one of her horses won. She always made racing special. How many people (my mum especially) would back a horse purely because it was the Queen’s horse? And she really had some great racehorses. Her presence will truly be missed in the racing world, especially at the Royal Ascot Festival. The British Horseracing Authority announced a 2 day suspension to racing to grieve her loss and remember her contribution to the sport.

We can’t ignore her success in breeding sport horses and carriage horses. But for me, her support of natives and the disappearing breeds such as the Cleveland Bay. Not only has she helped keep these breeds going, she has produced fantastic horses. From showing champions to driving Gold Medals. It was always fantastic to see her out riding her Fell ponies around the grounds at an age when most of us will have hung up our riding boots.

We will never have a monarch quite like her again and while the world is mourning her passing, the equine world is celebrating her contribution to our sport, despite the large hole she has left behind.

Last Updated on 09/09/2022

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