Suffolk Show 2018: Queen's horse takes top prize at Trinity Park
PUBLISHED: 08:35 01 June 2018 | UPDATED: 10:26 01 June 2018
One of the Queen’s own horses stole the show at Trinity Park, beating the odds to bring home one of Suffolk’s highest honours.
Lancer IV, a light horse raised by royal showing producer Katie Jerram-Hunnable, beat the best in the business to become Suffolk Supreme In-Hand Champion.
Bred by the Queen, and led by Mrs Jerram-Hunnable’s husband Chris, Lancer IV won the judges’ hearts at one of the most hotly contested shows of the week.
Mrs Jerram-Hunnable, who has been raising the Queen’s horses for 14 years, said it was a great honour to receive the prize – especially after suffering a broken neck last year.
She said: “Today meant such a lot. To be a light horse winning where the heavy horses normally prevail – I think it’s just quite an awesome moment. He’s just a charming chap and it’s an honour to be here.”
Mrs Jerram-Hunnable got into the royal business after she was recommended for the job over a decade ago.
“I had a telephone call from Terry Pendry (the Queen’s stud groom), and a lady called Vanessa Compton said: ‘By the way you’re going to get a phone call – Her Majesty The Queen wants a rider to ride her horses and I’ve put your name forward.’ I said don’t be silly, it’ll never happen – that’s stupid. And sort of surely it did happen. Promptly I had an interview with Terry Pendry – went to Windsor Castle and looked at a horse, and it went from there.
“I’ve produced for the Queen for over 14 years, and I have four in at the moment. I love the fact that I’ve been asked to do it and very proud of it.
“It’s the Queen’s horse – it’ll be her’s forever – we’re the lucky ones that are chosen to produce them and to ride them.”
Mrs Jerram-Hunnable knew Lancer IV was special from the start.
She said: “I chose him a foal from the field, off his mother. He was just born and I said to Terry Pendry: ‘I’d love that – it’s absolutely beautiful’. Once he was weaned he was sent to me, and then he did the Queen’s 90th birthday party – the parade at Winsdor Castle two years ago, and it was absolutely amazing.
“He had a fantastic run last year – he won all his in-hand classes, this year our main aim was to come here. Hopefully he’ll be back next year as a four year old under saddle.”
She added that Suffolk is her favourite of all the shows.
“I’ve been here since I was on lead way [competing against Chris] and it’s our show,” Mrs Jerram-Hunnable said. “It’s the first year since I was the age of seven I haven’t been able to compete here, so a particularly sad year – but sad and then fantastic, with a big celebration at the end of it.
“It was such a worry when I had the accident. I’m so lucky all my lovely owners have remained with me, and particularly Her Majesty The Queen stayed there with her horses, handed them over to Chris to ride this year, and hopefully I can be back next year.”
This is by no means the end of Lancer IV’s career – although things will be a little different from now on.
Mrs Jerram-Hunnable added: “He starts next year as a ridden horse and his career will then go on for a period of time after that, under saddle with us.”