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Queen Elizabeth II receives inaugural FEI Lifetime Achievement award

(Xinhua) Updated: 2014-11-28 11:23

Queen Elizabeth II receives inaugural FEI Lifetime Achievement award

Britian's Queen Elizabeth II is presented with the Federation Equestre Internationale (FEI) lifetime achievement award for her devotion to equestrian sport by Princess Haya of Jordan, left, at Buckingham Palace, London, Nov 26, 2014. [Photo/IC]

LONDON -- Queen Elizabeth II has become the first recipient of the FEI Lifetime Achievement award in recognition of her leading role as supporter of equestrian sport throughout her reign as British monarch, the FEI, the equestrian's world governing body, announced on Thursday.

The award was presented to the queen by FEI President Princess Haya at a ceremony in Buckingham Palace Wednesday afternoon in the presence of former FEI President the Duke of Edinburgh Prince Phillip, and Keith Taylor, Chairman of the British Equestrian Federation.

Horses featured in The Queen's life from a very young age. She had her first riding lesson in the private riding school at Buckingham Palace Mews in January 1930, when she was just three years old and was given her first pony, the Shetland mare Peggy, by her grandfather King George V on her fourth birthday.

In the Thoroughbred world, horses bred by The Queen have won more than 1,600 races. She also breeds Shetland, Highland and Fell ponies to ensure the traditional bloodlines in these native breeds are preserved and enhanced.

Equestrian sport celebrated 100 years in the Olympic Movement at London 2012, where The Queen's granddaughter Zara Phillips claimed team silver in Eventing. Zara Phillips won team and individual gold at the FEI World Equestrian Games in 2006 and was also crowned European champion in 2005, following in the footsteps of her mother, Princess Anne, also a former FEI President.

The FEI Lifetime Achievement award was created by Princess Haya in 2014, her final year as FEI President, to acknowledge an individual who has inspired generations across the global equestrian community.

Recipients of this award are recommended by the FEI Executive Board, and the FEI Bureau was delighted that the first-ever award has gone to Queen Elizabeth II.

The award is a stunning white gold and diamond brooch of nine interlinked horseshoes, created especially for the presentation, and mirroring the insignia of the FEI Awards.

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