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Charles and Camilla join horse racing fans on first day of Royal Ascot

Charles and Camilla arrived by car and not the traditional carriage procession, and were watched by some of the public waiting for the racing to begin.

Punters were hoping the Queen would make an appearance but a few caught a glimpse of a group of royal women arriving at the Berkshire meet.

The Princess Royal was joined by her daughter and son-in-law Zara and Mike Tindall and the Countess of Wessex was also seen arriving at the racecourse.

The Queen did not join racing fans at the start of the five-day meet, choosing instead to watch it on television at Windsor Castle

She has a runner, King’s Lynn, in the 15.40 King’s Stand Stakes.

The Queen’s racing manager John Warren has said the monarch, a keen horse breeder, is hoping to attend the Berkshire racecourse later in the week.

Mr Warren described how horse racing offers the monarch a “very broad escapism” from all that she has to deal with in her life.

He described the head of state as “fanatic” about horse racing, and said her energy levels were “incredible” despite being five years away from turning 100.

Mr Warren told BBC Radio 4’s Today Programme on Tuesday: “It’s remarkable. The Queen’s energy levels are incredible. She’s 95.

“She went down to the G7 this week, and trundled back on the train in the middle of the night and the energy will be raised higher again for a week like Ascot.”

PA

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