The Queen will have a runner at the word’s biggest horse racing meeting next week as the Cheltenham Festival gets underway.
Her Majesty’s horse, Forth Bridge, is currently placed at 33-1 in the betting markets. The four-year-old is set to race in the JCB Triumph Hurdle on Friday.
The Queen’s horse won it’s last two races at Musselburgh, and The Royal Family are hoping his winning streak will be extended to Cheltenham.
Charlie Longsdon is the man tasked with training The Queen’s colours.
He said: “He has been quite impressive so far on courses that haven’t suited him. I think there is loads of improvement to come.”
Mr Longsdon was originally considering putting the horse in the Fred Winter Juvenile Novices’ Handicap Hurdle, however, will now take part in the Triumph Hurdle.
Forth Bridge is up against strong competition. The current odds on favourite to take the trophy is Defi Du Seuil – currently 6/4 on the markets.
Other entries include Charli Parcs, Soldier In Action, Dandy Mag, Ex-Patriot and Long Call.
The Queen is not the only member of The Royal Family to be taking an interest in Cheltenham this year.
On Ladies’ Day, the Duchess of Cornwall will pay a visit where she will present the trophy to the winner of The Queen Mother Champion Chase.
The Duchess has a keen interest in animals and animal welfare and is currently patron of seven equine charities including the British Equestrian Federation and the Brooke Hospital for Animals. She has also been a passionate horse rider for some time and attended many events before her association with the Royal family, and its love of horses.
The Queen especially has a passion for horses, having won over 1,600 races making her one of the most successful racehorse owners in history. She has also won every one of the five British Classic Races, many multiple times, except the Epsom Derby, a race that the Queen has yet to grasp. She did finish agonisingly close in the year of her coronation, 1953, where Aureole finished second to Pinza.
In 1954 and 1957, she was named British flat racing Champion Owner, the first reigning monarch ever to do so twice. She also recently won the Racehorse Owners Association Owner of the Year award in 2013 after her magnificent win with Estimate in the Ascot Gold Cup.
There are three races named in honour of the Queen, those being the Queen Elizabeth II Challenge Cup Stakes, the Queen Elizabeth II Commemorative Cup and the Queen Elizabeth II Stakes.