Meghan kissed by celebrity jockey as royal couple present Ascot prize
Frankie Dettori kissed Meghan’s hand as the Duke and Duchess of Sussex spent a day at the races.
The Duchess of Sussex found she had a secret admirer in Frankie Dettori after the celebrity jockey stole a kiss – after winning a race.
Meghan was paid the compliment by the rider who kissed her hand when she presented him with his winning prize after a thrilling victory.
Just four weeks after marrying, Meghan and Harry spent a day at the races as guests of the Queen in the royal box and enjoyed an afternoon of quintessential English entertainment.
Dettori rode favourite Without Parole to victory in the St James’s Palace Stakes, which has a total prize fund of more than £530,000, holding off a late challenge from Gustav Klimt.
The newlyweds were waiting in the parade ring to present the winning jockey with his prize and the owners and breeders Canadians John and Tanya Gunther, a father and daughter team.
Mr Gunther said after the presentation: “We just had the royal wedding and to actually meet them in person – it’s like climbing Mount Everest.”
He added: “Royal Ascot is the Olympic week of racing, it’s that awesome.”
The Queen and other members of her family received a rapturous welcome when they first arrived in the traditional carriage procession which launched the opening day of Royal Ascot.
Thousands of racegoers cheered and applauded from the stands as the Queen’s carriage led the way down the course.
The Princess Royal and Duke of York joined their mother in the lead carriage and were followed by another carrying the Prince of Wales, Duchess of Cornwall and Princesses Beatrice and Eugenie.
Harry and Meghan were next, with the Earl and Countess of Wessex, and the duchess waved as they travelled past the packed stands on their way to the royal box.
Their visit came as it was announced they will make their first official overseas visit as a married couple next month, travelling to the Irish capital Dublin for a two-day trip.
Royal Ascot is as much a social and fashion occasion as a major sporting event and the female racegoers had gone out of their way to impress on the first day of the event.
Meghan wore a chic outfit from Givenchy, the fashion house that designed her wedding gown, with a stylish Philip Treacy hat.
Beatrice was dressed in a Claire Mischevani outfit and a hat by Juliette Botterill while her sister Eugenie wore a dress by Osman and a hat by Emily London.
Designer Isabell Kristensen, who has been attending the famous race meeting for more than 20 years, was photographed wearing a large delicate rose for a hat which was designed by her son Martin.
She said: “The hat has to come first, the outfit second. My son designed it in our fashion house, it’s large but it’s very light and easy to wear.”
Barrister Edite Ligere wore a large stylish blue and white hat topped with ostrich feathers, which was started by famous milliner John Boyd, who created hats for Diana, Princess of Wales, before he died earlier this year aged 92, and finished by Sarah Marshall.
Ms Ligere said: “I love the thrill of the racing, the horses are so beautiful and its the best race meeting in the world.
“It’s wonderful to see so many people have made an effort with their hats.”
As a horse owner and breeder the Queen has a lifetime of experience and has seen her thoroughbreds win more than 20 Royal Ascot races – but her horse Fabricate was well beaten in the final race of the day.
Punters traditionally have a flutter on the colour of the Queen’s hat and she was wearing the bookie’s favourite, yellow, as part of a matching outfit which included a dress and coat all by Angela Kelly.
William Hill spokesman Rupert Adams said it was first blood to racegoers and that they originally offered yellow at 4-1 but it was backed into 15-8.
He added: “Well, we live to fight another day and hopefully we can win back our loses tomorrow, our early favourite is pink at 9-4.”