The 2017 Kentucky Derby marks 10 years since Queen Elizabeth attended, but will the Bluegrass State be graced with the presence of Her Majesty in the future?
Although there are a few hints that Queen Elizabeth might be retired from traveling abroad, there are still good reasons she might come to Kentucky or even sit in on the Kentucky Derby.
When Queen Elizabeth attended the Kentucky Derby in 2007, she visited with her long-time friends and fellow horse breeders; William and Sarah Farish. The Farish family and Queen Elizabeth became acquainted decades ago when William Farish was an ambassador from America to the U.K.
Queen Elizabeth might like Kentucky because of her friends, but as a horse breeder and renowned thoroughbred bloodlines expert, Queen Elizabeth could show up at any horse race at any time because she has owned horses that have won major races for most of her life.
In fact, as previously reported by the Inquisitr, Queen Elizabeth’s top-winning mare, Highclere, was lovingly placed with the Farish family at Lane’s End Farm in Kentucky for breeding starting in the 1980’s. Highclere was the mother of the famous Japanese thoroughbred, Deep Impact.
Throughout the 1980’s, Queen Elizabeth frequently visited Lane’s End Farm to see Highclere, but her visits to Kentucky ended when Highclere passed away in 1992.
After Highclere’s death, Queen Elizabeth may have visited Kentucky, but it was not advertised. However, when Queen Elizabeth decided to visit the Kentucky Derby in 2007 for the first time, a media bonanza ensued.
Despite only spending a few minutes in her seats at Churchill Downs to see Street Sense win the race, everyone felt her presence at the Kentucky Derby. The event was such a monumental one that celebrities are still selling off the outfits they wore in photos taken with or near Queen Elizabeth at the 2007 Kentucky Derby.
For example, in March it was announced that actress Susan Lucci auctioned off the hat she was wearing when she was pictured with Queen Elizabeth at the 2007 Kentucky Derby. The hat is black straw, and Susan Lucci was seated behind Queen Elizabeth and her husband, Prince Phillip, during the Kentucky Derby, according to FOX News.
About being seated next to Queen Elizabeth at the 2007 Kentucky Derby, Erica Fencil, a college student at the time, expressed what many were feeling and was quoted by Reuters stating the following.
“It’s unbelievable. I can’t believe I’m in the same room with her.”
Queen Elizabeth would certainly be welcome anywhere in Kentucky or at the Kentucky Derby, but would she be able to attend a second time in the first place?
One of the main cons in this situation would be Queen Elizabeth’s age. Regardless, on Queen Elizabeth’s 91st birthday on April 21, she went to a horse racing track and spent the day watching one of her horses run, as previously reported by the Inquisitr.
On the other hand, Queen Elizabeth might be under a lot of pressure about traveling because of her carbon footprint. In a BBC article about Queen Elizabeth’s first and only visit to the Kentucky Derby, it was noted that Her Majesty’s carbon footprint was calculated for the first time.
To make up for her carbon footprint sins that were accrued by attending the Kentucky Derby, Queen Elizabeth and her entourage donated to an environmental charity.
While everyone in Louisville, Kentucky, would gladly go through etiquette training all over again so Her Majesty would feel welcome at the next Kentucky Derby, Queen Elizabeth might not attend another Kentucky Derby in her lifetime.
Nevertheless, it is likely that someone in Queen Elizabeth’s family will. For example, Queen Elizabeth stated she enjoyed visiting Kentucky and so does Prince Charles.
Prince Charles and Duchess Camilla Parker Bowles visited Kentucky in 2015, but were about a month too early to attend the Kentucky Derby.
When Prince Charles visited Kentucky, he was quick to point out the main interest he and the Duchess had was spreading interest in protecting the environment.
When Prince Charles and Duchess Camilla Parker Bowles did attend a horse-related event during their trip to Louisville, Kentucky, it was to discuss a horse charity.
The event took place at Churchill Downs, and Duchess Bowles talked about her non-profit, The Brooke; an organization that cares for working horses in developing nations, according to USA Today.
Queen Elizabeth is also not the only member of British Royalty to attend the Kentucky Derby. Since the first Kentucky Derby on May 17, 1875, there have been four occasions when British Royals attended a Kentucky Derby.
The first was in 1930 by the 17th Earl of Derby, and the Duke of Windsor attended the 1951 Kentucky Derby. When the Kentucky Derby turned 100, Queen Elizabeth II’s sister, Princess Margaret, attended with her husband, Lord Snowden, and helped award the trophy to the Kentucky Derby winner.
[Feature Image by Churchill Downs/Kinetic Corporation via Getty Images]