If you're a fan of the fine sport of horse racing, chances are that you're also pretty intrigued by the Royal Ascot. The five-day occasion has an appeal all its own, so whether it's the sumptuous headwear fashion on display during Ladies Day, or the guttural roar of the crowd as an unfancied nag beats the heavily-backed favourite by a nose, this is an equestrian feast for lovers of the sport everywhere.
Some GB£5.5 million will change hands over the course of 18 races.
According to the Royal Ascot's official website, some 300,000 racing fans visit the festival over the five days each year, and it's now the most valuable race meeting in Britain today, surpassing even the legendary Cheltenham Festival. Some GB£5.5 million will change hands over the course of 18 races, and you can be there in 2016 with Motive Travel. To whet your appetite yet further, let's take a look at two memorable moments from Royal Ascots past.
Frankel defeats all
The hardcore racing fan needs no introduction to Frankel. Of the 14 races he participated in, the British thoroughbred won them all. That lead to his official rating of 140 by the World Thoroughbred Rankings, the highest since recordings began in 1977 – and other sources score him even higher. Frankel's cumulative winning distance stands at a monstrous 76.25 lengths, with an average winning distance of 5.4 lengths, according to Juddemonte Farms, where he currently lives as stud.
One of his greatest moments came during the 2012 Queen Anne Stakes. His blistering pace blew the rest of the field away, leading many commentators to state that it was perhaps the finest performance of any racehorse… ever. With many thousands of horses to have thundered down the final furlong over the years, that's good going, to say the least. Watch this performance to find out why:
A Royal clanger
When your horse wins one of the most prestigious trophies in horse racing, and said trophy is presented by non other than Price Harry, you should try, in the very least, not to drop it. That's exactly what happened to Jeffrey Sargeant when his horse Goldream was victorious at the 2015 King's Stand.
Caught by microphones and cameras, the trophy clanged to the ground as the British prince handed it over, which had the capacity for more than a little embarrassment. Not a bit of it. The Prince, ever cool under pressure, simply said to the mortified owner 'Apparently, it happens every year.' What a way to defuse the moment!