A sad day! Queen Elizabeth will miss the Royal Ascot for the second time in 69 years — but she may try to come later on in the week.
Instead, the 95-year-old — whose horse is running in the King's Stand Stakes today — will be watching from Windsor Castle.
"Obviously the Queen would love to attend, as you know she's fanatic about racing, watching racing and breeding horses, and has been going to Ascot all of her adult life," the Queen's racing manager, John Warren, said. "So, it's a shame to miss an event. The plan at the moment is to see how it goes towards the latter part of the week and if the Queen's able to come because she's got runners, then, fingers crossed, it will happen."
Since the Queen won't be making an appearance, there will be no traditional carriage procession. Additionally, the monarch will not be able to check out the horses beforehand due to rules put in place.
"In the past, she would have gone and looked at horses in the paddock, even though they weren't hers because she is so fascinated in the breed so she'd want go and look at the stallion prospects of the future," Warren noted. "Every race that takes place every day of the week, the Queen will certainly read the Racing Post every morning, look at the breeding of all the winners the day before, and see that these stallions that she uses will be potential horses for her own mares. It's a deep fascination, a very broad escapism for all the other things that the Queen has to deal with in her life."
Warren also praised the Queen for taking on so many tasks at her age. "It's remarkable. The Queen's energy levels are incredible. She's 95. She went down to the G7 this week, and trundled back on the train in the middle of the night and the energy will be raised higher again for a week like Ascot," he said.
The Queen missed the Royal Ascot last year, too, due to the ongoing pandemic.
However, Mike and Zara Tindall appeared at the event, and they were joined by Prince Edward, Sophie, Countess of Wessex and Princess Anne.