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Queen Elizabeth's love of horses: A look at her equestrian life


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October 20, 2017
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Queen Elizabeth's love of horses is a lifelong one. In 2014, in fact, the beloved monarch, who has been riding horses for most of her nine decades, was presented with the International Equestrian Federation (FEI) Lifetime Achievement Award for her dedication to the sport. "Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth is a life-long lover of horses who has inspired millions around the world," said FEI President Princess Haya of Jordan. "She is a true horsewoman, who still rides whenever state business allows, and her knowledge of breeding and bloodlines is incredible." In honor one of the world's most dedicated royal equestrians, HELLO! takes a look back at her passion for ponies.Now in her 90s, Her Majesty had her first riding lesson at the age of three and was given her first pony, a Shetland mare, by her grandfather King George V when she turned four. Here is the then-Princess on her 13th birthday in April 1939.Photo: Getty Images
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Wearing the sensible shoes and tights that she is known for, a young Princess Elizabeth was pictured with one of her horses at Windsor Castle in 1944.Photo: Getty Images
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The newly-coronated Queen wore a Colonel-in-Chief Scots Guards Uniform as she rode a horse named Winston on June 6, 1952. At the time, the young royal had already been a keen rider for more than two decades.Photo: Getty Images
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Here, Queen Elizabeth is seen riding alongside little sister Princess Margaret during the summer of '69. The monarch's younger sister, who passed away in 2002, was 39 at the time. Photo: Getty Images
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Looking serious at the 1968 Eridge Horse Trials. At her side was her daughter Princess Anne, who is the spitting image of her own daughter, Zara Phillips. Showing that horseback riding is in the genes, Zara is a champion equestrian herself who scored a silver medal in the 2012 London Olympics.Photo: Getty Images
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Queen Elizabeth attended the Windsor Horse Show in 1987 with son Prince Andrew and his now ex-wife Sarah, Duchess of York. The event is still a favorite occasion of the monarch, and her teenage granddaughter Lady Louise has participated.Photo: Getty Images
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Queen Elizabeth, donned her signature tartan skirt and printed scarf for this equestiran day out. The royal looked right at home with riding and Range Rovers – and youngest son Prince Edward – in 1993.Photo: Getty Images
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The British monarch doesn't just like riding – she likes watching the races as well! Here she is showing off her 1990s style in an outfit by John Anderson at Epsom racecourse in Surrey, England, in June 1995.Photo: Tim Graham/Getty Images
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Queen Elizabeth clearly adored her Highland pony Balmoral Melody. The horse's name is shared with both a song and the royal's Scottish summer home, Balmoral Castle – in May 2007.Photo: Getty Images
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The Queen's interest extends to horses in all their forms! Her Majesty examined a mechanical horse used to train jockeys during a 2011 visit to Ireland.Photo: Getty Images
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In October 2015, the monarch, joined by Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, looked thrilled to attend a horse whispering demonsration by Brooke Global Ambassador Monty Roberts at the Royal Mews, Buckingham Palace.Photo: Getty Images
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Queen Elizabeth was reunited with one of her former race horses Quadrille in November 2016 in Newmarket, England, where she fed her old pal some carrots and gave him a pet on the nose. Photo: Getty Images
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On October 19, 2017, Queen Elizabeth enjoyed another sweet reunion! This time she came nearly nose to nose with one of her former horses as she reviewed The King's Troop Royal Horse Artillery (KTRHA) on the 70th anniversary at Hyde Park. The KTRHA was formed by King George VI in October 1947 and are commonly known as the 'Gunners.' Photo: Samir Hussein/WireImage

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