Zara Phillips Targets 2016 Rio Olympics

Last week she was spied on a bicycle, pedaling to support husband Mike Tindall during his quadrathalon in Scotland but today Zara Phillips was back in a very different kind of saddle.

The Olympian joined equestrians at the Tweseldown Horse Trials in Aldershot, during a day of show jumping, cross country riding and dressage.It was a return for work after the excitement of Princess Charlotte's christening and socialising with her cousins at Ascot.Every inch the athlete, Zara, 34, was snapped riding a bay horse called Rum Expectations and a chestnut named Drops Of Brandy.

During the cross country challenges, the royal wore waterproofs and sturdy boots and only changed into tailored navy jacket with red lapels for the show jumping round.

Just a week ago, however, she played a supporting role to her husband, who was taking on a sporting challenge of his own in the Great Kindrochit Quadrathlon in Perthshire.

Like husband Mike, Zara has enjoyed significant amounts of sporting success in recent years and is hoping to secure a place in the British eventing team at the Rio de Janeiro Olympics next summer. 

Zara also rode Drops of Brandy during the cross country challenge, leaping over jumps on the course

However, Zara - who was riding again just 12 weeks after giving birth, has also been open about the difficulties of returning to full fitness after the birth of her daughter. She told FT Weekend Magazine that she has spent her afternoons swimming and cycling to become fighting fit again, admitting: 'What surprised me about having a baby is losing all your fitness and how tough it is to get it back.'

Crowned BBC Sports Personality of the Year in 2006 Zara won team silver at the 2012 Olympics in London on her horse High Kingdom.

She also has a host of other awards under her belt including individual and team gold at the European Eventing Championships in 2005 and individual gold and team silver at the World Equestrian Games in 2006.

Meanwhile, Zara has released her new equestrian-themed jewellery line, produced in collaboration with designer John Calleja.  

Her career - and her lucrative endorsements of Land Rover and Rolex among others - is managed by her brother Peter Phillips, who, like his sister, has no royal title and receives no money from the public purse.

Zara, who says her brother can be 'bossy' at times, says both have been inspired to work harder by the example set by their mother, Princess Anne.

Last year, their mother the Princess Royal undertook more public engagements than any other royal, with the sole exception of her brother, Prince Charles.





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