Queen Elizabeth II delight: One huge cause for celebration at Windsor Castle today


THE QUEEN will be celebrating at Windsor Castle this afternoon following a very special royal victory.

Queen Elizabeth II, 94, has a passion for horse racing and owns and breeds thoroughbreds for the sport. While the Queen will have been sad to have missed Royal Ascot this year, as the event was held behind doors, a huge highlight will have been when her horse Tactical won the Windsor Castle Stakes.

Tactical was the Queen’s first Royal Ascot winner since 2016 and the victory was particularly sweet as the horse was homebred.

On Thursday, July 9, Tactical had another huge success at Newmarket’s July meeting.

The Queen’s horse beat the 15-8 favourite Qaader to win the Group 2 Tattersalls July Stakes, a victory which will have delighted the Queen.

Following the race on Thursday, Tactical’s trainer Andrew Balding told ITV 4 racing he was ‘thrilled for Her Majesty’.

Queen Elizabeth II delight

Queen Elizabeth II delight: One huge cause for celebration at Windsor Castle today (Image: GETTY)

Queen Elizabeth II delight

Queen Elizabeth II delight: The Queen’s horse Tactical won at Newmarket on Thursday (Image: GETTY)

Mr Balding also told Racing TV: “We’re thrilled with him, he’s always looked like a good horse at home.

“He won really well at Ascot and pleased us since, so it wasn’t a huge surprise, but I just liked the way he did it.

“He’s a very relaxed horse in his races, he really switched off and quickened when William wanted him to so he’s a proper professional and I’m thrilled to have him in the yard.”

Asked what’s next for Tactical Mr Balding said that the Prix Morny is probably his next race, ‘providing Her Majesty is keen on the idea too.’

Queen Elizabeth II delight

Queen Elizabeth II delight: Tactical was bread and trained by the Queen’s team and won at Royal Ascot last month (Image: GETTY)

The Queen likes to stay well-informed about every detail regarding her racehorses and is well-versed in the ins and outs of the sport.

Following Tactical’s win at Royal Ascot 2020, the Queen’s racing manager John Warren told the Guardian: “I suspect deep down there might have been a tinge of disappointment that she’s not there.

“But it was completely over-ridden by the fact that she’d actually had the winner.”

Mr Warren added: “It’s obviously a great shame that her Majesty’s not there to be able to go down and enjoy the whole buzz of her runners.

“But she’s studied every bit of it today, watching the races, and the last two days, she’s been able to spend a bit of time watching the most important races, so this was the icing on the cake to actually have a winner.”

Mr Warren said racing is the Queen’s “great passion” and that she follows it in some way every day.

He added: “Every day of her life, she follows racing one way or another when she can, so she would have read the Racing Post in great detail and built up to this week, and known very well the important fancied horses.

“When she watches the racing, she’s fully up to date with the horses’ backgrounds, who trains them, who’s riding them and a lot about the horses and the way they’re bred because that’s her great passion, the breeding.”

Asked about whether they had spotted Tactical’s potential from the start, Mr Warren said: “Andrew [Balding, Tactical’s trainer] had been saying since the spring that the horse was naturally precocious and had been finding his work terribly easy, so it looked as though he was a nice prospect.”

Queen Elizabeth II delight

Queen Elizabeth II delight: The Queen’s racing manager John Warren has revealed she is well-versed in the sport (Image: GETTY)

Mr Warren also revealed that while the Queen has not been able to visit her horses as much as she would like during lockdown, she is occasionally able to watch foals being born on her iPad.

He said: “[The stud managers] keep the Queen very informed, more so with photography recently because she’s been unable to go and see the stock.

“She even watches them being born on the iPad if it’s the right time of the evening.

“Breeding one and following it through all its issues and humps and bumps in the road [means] she’ll get special enjoyment out of breeding this.”


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