Swiss watchmaker Longines presented Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II with the prestigious 2018 Longines Ladies Award, celebrating the Queen’s lifelong achievements at the very highest level of global equine sport.
Longines Vice President Juan-Carlos Capelli, International Federation of Horseracing Authorities (IFHA) Chairman Louis Romanet, and Fédération Equestre Internationale (FEI) President Ingmar De Vos presented the award to Queen Elizabeth II during QIPCO British Champions Day at Ascot Racecourse, on Saturday, Oct. 20.
Taking place for the sixth consecutive year, the Longines Ladies Awards celebrate women who have consistently performed at the highest level and made a significant contribution to the equestrian industry through their work. As an owner and breeder of Thoroughbreds as well as the patron of the Thoroughbred Breeders' Association, Queen Elizabeth II has always taken a keen and highly knowledgeable interest in the equestrian world. She often visits race meetings to watch her horses run, and she also frequently attends equestrian events, such as the Derby at Epsom, one of the classic flat races in Britain, and the royal meeting at Ascot, of which Longines is an official partner, timekeeper, and watch.
The Queen's horses have won races at Royal Ascot on a number of occasions. There was a notable double on June 18, 1954 when Landau won the Rous Memorial Stakes and Aureole won the Hardwicke Stakes. Three years later, the Queen had four winners during Ascot week. Following these successes, Her Majesty was named “British flat racing champion owner” in 1954 and 1957, the first reigning monarch ever to do so twice.
As of today, horses owned by the Queen have won more than 1,600 races, including two Longines-timed races, the Longines Sagaro Stakes and the Gold Cup, which were both won by Estimate.
In addition, this year in June, the Queen’s horse Call To Mind captured the Grade 2 Belmont Gold Cup Invitational at Belmont Park, a racecourse which was associated with the Swiss watch brand in 1881.
Capelli, vice president and head of international marketing for Longines, said: “In the light of a long list of remarkable achievements, it is a great honor for Longines to present the 2018 Longines Ladies Award to Her Majesty the Queen, as a celebration of Her Majesty’s passion for horses and exceptional commitment to the equine cause. This strong dedication to equestrian sports runs in the family, as we were delighted to bestow the same award on the Queen’s daughter, HRH The Princess Royal, in 2016.”
The 2018 Longines Ladies Award has been judged and decided by three leaders in world equestrianism: De Vos, Romanet, and Nathalie Bélinguier, former president of the International Federation of Gentleman and Lady Riders (FEGENTRI).
Previous winners of this award include Reed Kessler, Georgina Bloomberg, Michelle Payne, and the honorable Belinda Stronach, P.C. (2017); Her Royal Highness, The Princess Royal (2016); Her Royal Highness, Princess Haya Al Hussein (2015); Sylvie Robert, Criquette Head-Maarek, Jing Li, and Bo Derek (2014); and Princess Zahra Aga Khan, Athina Onassis, and Sophie Thalmann (2013).