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Duchess of Cornwall presents Grand National trophy

The Duchess of Cornwall attends the Randox Grand National at Aintree Racecourse (Chris Furlong/PA)
The Duchess of Cornwall attends the Randox Grand National at Aintree Racecourse (Chris Furlong/PA)

The Duchess of Cornwall has presented the trophy to the owner of Grand National winning horse Noble Yeats.

Camilla was at Aintree on Saturday as crowds returned to the racecourse to watch the steeplechase for the first time since 2019.

Some racegoers shouted hello as the duchess arrived at the course, wearing a green coat, brown boots, black leather gloves and a fur-rimmed hat.

Randox Health Grand National Festival 2022 – Grand National Day – Aintree Racecourse
The Duchess of Cornwall prior to presenting the trophy (Peter Byrne/PA)

She met chairman of Aintree racecourse Nigel Wrigley and the Jockey Club North West regional director Dickon White and watched the race from hospitality.

After seeing jockeys and horses in the parade ring, Camilla watched the Grand National from the top floor of a stand, using binoculars to follow the action.

She waved a hand in the air as the winning horse crossed the finish line.

She then presented the Grand National trophy to horse owner Robert Waley-Cohen and congratulated his son, jockey Sam Waley-Cohen.

Saturday marked the first anniversary of the death of Prince Philip, as well as Charles and Camilla’s 17th wedding anniversary.

Royal visit to Aintree
The Duchess of Cornwall (Chris Furlong/PA)

The Duchess also met representatives from community groups and charities, including four-year-old Betty Batt who was there on behalf of Alder Hey Children’s Hospital.

Betty, who spent the first 13 months of her life at the hospital after she was born premature and weighing just 650 grams, appeared on the racecard as the honorary 41st runner.

Her father Philip, from Warrington, said: “Camilla was absolutely fantastic and we were really pleased to meet her.

“We did give her some tips, I told her to go for number 13.

“She gave me a nod and a wink in response.”

Betty’s mother Karen and siblings Martha, 11, and Stanley, 13, were also at Aintree for the day.

Karen said: “Betty has never seen a horse before today. She’s been mesmerised and it’s a lovely atmosphere here.”

The duchess, whose  also met youngsters from Ebony Horse Club in Brixton, of which she is the president.

Maxim Lawrence-Botu, 18, said: “This is the second time I’ve seen her and we spoke about the time I went to see her at her house.

“She remembered me and it was really nice.

“I can’t wait to see the Grand National and we spoke about that.”

Children and volunteers from inner city riding school Park Palace Ponies also met Camilla.

The school, based in Toxteth, Liverpool, offers lessons to children who have never ridden before and took horses on doorstep visits to cheer people up during lockdown.

Nine-year-old Lily Elliott said: “She asked have I had any winners today and my answer was yes, I picked a winner.”

Camilla was not the only Royal at the races, with Zara Tindall also spotted at Aintree.

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