Queen's Grandson Peter Phillips on His Latest Project, Growing Up Royal

Peter Phillips is the queen of England’s eldest grandchild

ByABC News
August 14, 2014, 12:06 PM

— -- Peter Phillips may be the queen of England’s eldest grandchild, the 12th in line to the British throne and a cousin of Princes William and Harry, but, his royal lineage, he says, is no excuse to not work hard.

“We get on with it ourselves,” Phillips told ABC News, “and work for our living.”

Phillips, 36, and the son of the queen's daughter, Princess Anne, is this week working on what many are calling the biggest event to hit London since the 2012 Olympics, the Longines Global Champions Tour, a premiere show-jumping event.

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“The Longines Global Champions Tour is the diamond league of show jumping,” Phillips said. "It's the top 30 riders in the world. The top 30 horses in the world."

Competitors in this year's event include some boldface names from the United States, including Bruce Springsteen's daughter, Jessica, former New York City Mayor Mike Bloomberg's daughter, Georgina, and Jennifer Gates, the daughter of Bill Gates.

"This is where all the riders want to be," Phillips said.

The Tour kicks off today and runs through Sunday at the Horse Guards Parade, near Buckingham Palace, in London. The equestrian endeavor is one that is close to Phillips' heart, considering his family's passion for horses.

The queen, at age 88, still rides horses, and shared her love of the animals with her grandchildren starting at an early age.

“I was on a pony before I could really remember,” Phillips said of his childhood, growing up less than 10 miles away from his cousins, William and Harry.

It was two summers ago, at the 2012 London Olympics, that Prince William and Prince Harry turned out to support Phillips’ sister, Zara Phillips, as she took home an Olympic silver medal in the team equestrian event.

“To have an Olympics in your home city and then to have a family member win a medal was absolutely fantastic,” Phillips said. “It was phenomenal.”

Phillips says when he and his Royal relatives gather together again this Christmas, it will be a chance for his own young daughters, Isla, 2, and Savannah, 3, to reunite with their cousin, 1-year-old Prince George.

“They've [Isla and Savannah] met him a couple of times," Phillips said of George, son of Prince William and Duchess Kate. "They're both at the age now where babies are obviously very interesting to them, especially since they're now slightly bigger."

"They get on pretty well," he said of the three second cousins.

Playtime among the second cousins, which this year will include a new addition, Mia, the 7-month-old daughter of Zara Phillips, is something Phillips said came as second nature to him, Harry and William when they were growing up.

“We had fun but we were kids, growing up as any other family would do,” Phillips said. “Going around to see your cousins as a normal family would do."

"As children, you don't know any different," he said.