The Queen has honoured a trusted companion who shares a passion for her favourite hobby.
Royal bloodstock and racing adviser John Warren was made a Commander of the Royal Victorian Order (RVO) in Her Majesty’s Birthday Honours list.
Over the years, Mr Warren has accompanied the Queen in the royal box or in the parade ring at race meetings including Royal Ascot and Epsom.
The latter track hosts the Derby on Saturday, part of the Platinum Jubilee celebrations, however reports suggest the reigning monarch will not be in attendance. Her advisor is married to Lady Carolyn Warren, daughter of the previous occupant of the racing role, the 7th Earl of Carnarvon.
The couple run Highclere Thoroughbred Racing near Newbury, producing the finest thoroughbreds for a career on the track.
Mr Warren, in the role for more than 10 years, was by The Queens side when she won the 2013 Gold Cup at Royal Ascot. Earlier this week, he told the Racing Post how much the hobby means to her.
“It’s been a really lovely month (for racing winners) and it gives the Queen so much pleasure,” Mr Warren said. “After 70 years of owning and breeding horses, every winner counts, no matter how big or small and that’s the sign of a true owner-breeder.”
RVO awards are given independently of Downing Street to people who have served the Queen or royal family in a personal way.
In 2021, the Queen enjoyed her best year ever in the sport, with 36 winners collecting over £550,000 in prize money. King’s Lynn was the most high profile of her recent scorers when he crossed the line first in the Group 2 Cazoo Temple Stakes at Haydock.
The gelding, named after the Norfolk town near Sandringham, is not the only topically named horse of the royal string. Reach For The Moon, who was being aimed at the Derby before a setback held up his training, was sired by Sea The Stars.
A trip to Royal Ascot is now the aim for Frankie Dettori’s mount.
Thoroughbreds owned by the Queen have won four out of the five flat racing classics – the 1,000 Guineas and 2,000 Guineas, the Oaks and the St Leger – with only the Derby eluding her.
On Saturday, the Queen will not have any runners at Epsom, but three horses have been declared for races elsewhere. Loudspeaker wears a first-time visor for the Doncaster Racecourse Celebrating The Platinum Jubilee Handicap, while Steal A March has been confirmed for a hurdle contest at Worcester.
In the evening, the Roger Charlton-trained Chancery Lane bids to make a flying start to his career in a novice event at Chepstow.
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The gelding’s dam is called Queen’s Prize, whose three offspring have all won races.
The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee festivities began earlier with Trooping the Colour. Fans were delighted when the first British monarch to celebrate such a milestone appeared on the Buckingham Palace balcony.
The RAF Red Arrows flypast thrilled all in attendance, while Harry and Meghan reunited with the royal family for the start of the special weekend.