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Places CritiqueA Day At The Track

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minniev
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A Day At The Track

Post by minniev » Wed Feb 20, 2019 7:51 pm

In no particular order, I'll post a few of the shots I got Monday at the race track in New Orleans. It's a wonderful place for all kinds of photography, though a better day would have been appreciated. Too dark, too gloomy to get the exposures I needed, it was about as bad as shooting Havana through the tinted windows of a moving bus. But not quite, since I could move around.

This horse got spooked as she moved onto the track from the paddock. This particular race was a first timers' race, all of them 3 year old fillies who had never run a race before. Having a calm jockey and groom and an experienced lead pony are all important for a good start.
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Post by Psjunkie » Thu Feb 21, 2019 1:54 am

Really great catch minniev..what an expression, all the way around actually...

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Post by PietFrancke » Thu Feb 21, 2019 2:03 am

LOL - the handler at least is calm... Wonderful shot Min

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minniev
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Post by minniev » Thu Feb 21, 2019 6:05 pm

Psjunkie wrote:
Thu Feb 21, 2019 1:54 am
Really great catch minniev..what an expression, all the way around actually...
Thanks. this was my favorite from the day.
"God gave me photography so that I could pray with my eyes" - Dewitt Jones

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minniev
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Post by minniev » Thu Feb 21, 2019 6:06 pm

PietFrancke wrote:
Thu Feb 21, 2019 2:03 am
LOL - the handler at least is calm... Wonderful shot Min
the handlers are always the calmest of all.
"God gave me photography so that I could pray with my eyes" - Dewitt Jones

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minniev
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Post by minniev » Thu Feb 21, 2019 6:12 pm

Eyes Down -

As Piet noted, the handlers/grooms are always the ones most calm. They have to be. They have so much influence on the horses. One thing I've noticed, is that while working with the horse in the paddock or on the track, grooms/handlers keep their eyes downcast 95% of the time, and their faces are almost expressionless. They don't talk to or even smile at the people they pass. It is very rare to catch one looking up, and almost impossible to make eye contact. I'm sure there is a reason for this. The jockeys, trainers, and owners will talk, laugh, greet each other as they watch or work. But not these guys.
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Post by PietFrancke » Thu Feb 21, 2019 6:21 pm

minniev wrote:
Thu Feb 21, 2019 6:12 pm
Eyes Down -

As Piet noted, the handlers/grooms are always the ones most calm. They have to be. They have so much influence on the horses. One thing I've noticed, is that while working with the horse in the paddock or on the track, grooms/handlers keep their eyes downcast 95% of the time, and their faces are almost expressionless. They don't talk to or even smile at the people they pass. It is very rare to catch one looking up, and almost impossible to make eye contact. I'm sure there is a reason for this. The jockeys, trainers, and owners will talk, laugh, greet each other as they watch or work. But not these guys.
another good shot Min - interesting about keeping the eyes downward..

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Post by davechinn » Thu Feb 21, 2019 6:25 pm

The first one, you can see it in the eye of the horse that she is spooked about something, but yet, the handler has no concern other than his phone conversation? Excellent capture Minnie.

I have several shots of the handlers/groomers, but I have not paid much attention to their body language. I'll have to go back for another review. Hope you have more to post.
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minniev
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Post by minniev » Fri Feb 22, 2019 4:01 pm

PietFrancke wrote:
Thu Feb 21, 2019 6:21 pm
minniev wrote:
Thu Feb 21, 2019 6:12 pm
Eyes Down -

As Piet noted, the handlers/grooms are always the ones most calm. They have to be. They have so much influence on the horses. One thing I've noticed, is that while working with the horse in the paddock or on the track, grooms/handlers keep their eyes downcast 95% of the time, and their faces are almost expressionless. They don't talk to or even smile at the people they pass. It is very rare to catch one looking up, and almost impossible to make eye contact. I'm sure there is a reason for this. The jockeys, trainers, and owners will talk, laugh, greet each other as they watch or work. But not these guys.
another good shot Min - interesting about keeping the eyes downward..
thanks!
"God gave me photography so that I could pray with my eyes" - Dewitt Jones

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minniev
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Post by minniev » Fri Feb 22, 2019 4:03 pm

davechinn wrote:
Thu Feb 21, 2019 6:25 pm
The first one, you can see it in the eye of the horse that she is spooked about something, but yet, the handler has no concern other than his phone conversation? Excellent capture Minnie.

I have several shots of the handlers/groomers, but I have not paid much attention to their body language. I'll have to go back for another review. Hope you have more to post.
Dave
Thanks Dave. I don't know if it's just custom at this track, or everywhere, but I've noticed it here since I first started going in the 70s. When I started photography it began to aggravate me some because I could very rarely get a shot of a horse being led and have anything remotely resembling eye contact with the groom. But it seems to be part of the routine.
"God gave me photography so that I could pray with my eyes" - Dewitt Jones

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