Racehorse photography, my life in racing, why I do what I do…
“I’ve been trying to find some photos of my ex-racehorse in his racing days, but to no avail. I saw that you photographed at Newton Abbot so hopefully you may have something…”
This is quite a regular enquiry for me and it makes me so happy for many reasons. Firstly, that wonderful racehorse went on to find a loving home and secondly, I can answer YES. I photograph every horse that races at Newton Abbot and have done since 2005. The customer is over the moon and I do a internal happy dance.
Looking for photographs, go to my racing images here
Showing images from 2013 to the present day. If you are looking for older horse racing images please contact me here
I do charge a small finders fee.
Not sure where your horse has raced.
Go to my blog on finding where your ex-racehorse has run
I became the official racing photographer at Newton Abbot by a happy coincidence. I have always photographed animals, primarily horses, I was working for an equine event photographer at the time and wanted to practise my skills with a newly acquired camera. I contacted the official racecourse photographer at Newton Abbot, Samantha Norman, to ask if I could join her for a race day. Sam was so helpful and encouraging, I loved the challenge of getting the action shots as well capturing the amazing atmosphere created at a race day, the new camera and I both performed well. Six months later I got a phone call to see if I would be interested in the role of Official Racecourse Photographer as Sam was retiring from that role. I jumped at it, met the Managing Director Patrick Masterson and the rest is history as they say, or making history! I was commission to photograph for a book ‘A Portrait of West Country Racing’ in 2008. It was such an honour and privilege and Newton Abbot featured heavily of course! It is a beautiful course with its unique charm and an amazing team of staff.
I am very passionate about my work and try to photograph every horse, it means I usually have to be in two places at once but I love the challenge. It is not all just about the action to me. If I see it, I love to capture the bond between a horse and its lad or lass, the elation of the jockey, the connections when their horse wins. I aim to capture the gratitude they have for their horse, no matter how it does in the race itself.
I have always worked that way and then I started getting feedback of the joy of owners finding their horses’ photos not just racing but gleaming in the pre parade ring and messages from the proud lad or lass that I have photographed leading up their ‘special’ horse. I knew I was doing the right thing.
When owners get in touch for photographs of their ex-racers, I enjoy their stories and their journeys. Some only race the once, some stay in racing till their early teens. To hear that they are living well and loved is the best bit. Occasionally I get commissioned to photograph them again, this time in their new home, that really is special. Fancy this, look at my bespoke shoots page.
The dedication and time it takes to reform a racehorse is underestimated by some. There are plenty of outstanding charities and trainers doing their best to re-educate a horse for a second career. I love that there is that option and it is being tapped into more and more.
Out of interest why not go to…
Charities such as RoR - Retraining of Racehorses
There are lots of details on there and plenty of resources for owners as well as those looking to take an ex-racehorse on.
I have so much admiration for anyone who takes on an ex-racehorse, I can’t applaud you enough.
Perhaps another book is in order…what do you think?