Clare Balding has opened up about her childhood, sharing sweet memories of her childhood which once involved having breakfast with the Queen! Appearing on this week's The Jonathan Ross Show, the sports presenter revealed she first met Her Majesty when her father, Ian Balding, used to train horses for the monarch. "My dad trained for the Queen so growing up, she would come and see the horses, and my brother still does train for the Queen," she explained. "So she'd come and see the horses about once a year and sometimes he'd forget to tell us that the Queen was coming."
Clare Balding's father used to train the Queen's racehorses
Elaborating further about the "surprise" visits, Clare added: "You'd have that situation where you came back to the house, the Queen was there for breakfast, that was really odd and he'd forgotten to tell us… I thought it was a bit odd because we weren't having breakfast the way we usually had it, it was all a bit smarter. I was meant to curtsey but I forgot because I ran in and thought 'cooked breakfast, fantastic, sausages!'" Three generations of the Balding family worked for the Queen - her grandfather, father and brother have all trained some of the royal's racehorses. The first pony Clare ever rode was a Shetland called Valkyrie - the pony was a gift from the Queen.
The sports presenter is on this week's Jonathan Ross Show
Speaking about meeting the royals more recently, Clare, 46, recalled the time she hosted a parade for Her Majesty's 90th birthday celebrations. "At the end of it all, the royal party did a walkabout and they came down to the stage and it was the only time during all of the celebrations where the Queen gave a speech," she shared. "She was coming up on to the stage, followed by Prince Philip, Prince William, Prince Harry were there and I was the only one on stage…"
Revealing her nerves if the Queen had tripped, Clare added: "The steps as they came up had one rail and I was terrified because I suddenly thought, the Queen is leading this party, Prince Philip is right behind her. If she falls, frankly I think two of them are going down, 'What do I do? What is protocol here? Do I run forward and try and save the situation or do I not?' Luckily she didn’t fall up the stairs!" To watch the full interview, tune into The Jonathan Ross Show on Saturday at 10.20pm on ITV.