sport news Trainer Eve Johnson Houghton has the genes to triumph again at Royal Ascot

Eve Johnson Houghton is determined to prove a point at Royal Ascot next week.

The No 1 priority is the desire to disprove those people who still think the win of her 33-1 shot Accidental Agent in last year's Group One Queen Anne Stakes, the mile race which opens the meeting on Tuesday, was a fluke.

It's an idea, Eve accepts, could be supported up by the evidence of two further runs last year which failed to match up to Accidental Agent's glory day, in particular a lacklustre show at Newmarket in September when he walked out of the starting stalls and looked none-too-keen to get involved.

Johnson Houghton with last year’s hero Accidental Agent, named after her grandfather Goldsmith,

Eve Johnson Houghton took over the stable at Blewbury from her father, Fulke, in 2007

But a subsequent bone scan that 'lit up like a Christmas tree' and showed the son of Delegator, owned and bred by Eve's mother Gaie, was running through the discomfort of hairline fracture in a rear leg cannon bone and a damaged joint in his off-fore leg.

Nursed back to health - the occasionally bad-tempered Accidental Agent would fall into the 'difficult patient' category - the five-year-old showed that racing pain-free he was once again a rival to be taken seriously with an encouraging comeback third to Mustashry, who he will face again, in last month's Lockinge Stakes at Newbury.

It was a run which showed Johnson Houghton's aim was suddenly mission possible and a Johnson Houghton on a mission is not someone to mess with. It's in the genes.

Eve's grandmother Helen was a steely character, who ran the family stable at Blewbury near Newbury during the era when the Jockey Club refused to grant training licences to women.

The trainer with last year’s Royal Ascot hero Accidental Agent, named after her grandfather

 The trainer with last year’s Royal Ascot hero Accidental Agent, named after her grandfather

While Accidental Agent is named after Eve's grandfather John Goldsmith, a trainer renowned for orchestrating some daring tilts at the betting ring and a man who showed limitless levels of bravery as a Special Operations officer acting behind enemy lines in the Second World War helping the French Resistance, actions which earned him the DSO, MC, Croix de Guerre and Legion D'Honneur.

Little wonder Eve didn't flinch when taking on a group of inebriated, rowdy young men who were behaving in an anti-social way at Salisbury last summer during a period when bad behaviour on racecourse was making headlines.

But Eve admits when she took over the stable from her father Fulke in 2007, Helen figure in the background.

Eve said: 'She was quite a scary lady. She lived until she was 102 and right up to the end she would tell me if I was doing it wrong.

Eve with a picture of her grandmother, Helen, who ran the family stable near Newbury

Eve with a picture of her grandmother, Helen, who ran the family stable near Newbury

'When she was 78, she saw a lad doing something she didn't like so she gave him a bollocking. He said, ''if you can do better, do it yourself'', so she did.

'She was a formidable woman but she had to be. Her husband (Gordon) was killed hunting when his horse slipped on some ice and he went under a lorry.

'She had two small children. Women were not allowed to hold licences and they had no money. She trained the horses but she had to get other people to hold the licence for her.

'We found some amazing letters from the Jockey Club saying someone can't have a licence because we know you are training the horses. That's how anti-women they were.

'She never held a licence and had to fight hard for dad to get the licence which he did when he was 21 but she was still in charge.

The trainer has showed a Johnson Houghton on a mission is not someone to mess with

The trainer has showed a Johnson Houghton on a mission is not someone to mess with

'She did not see herself

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