Week 47 A Bit more about the Racetrack

I shot a lot of film at this second visit to the track. I wanted to test out the Canon, as noted in my earlier post. Overall, it is a great camera and I have some nice lenses that were “lent” with it. But I find it hard to use because, paradoxically, it is so “modern” as film cameras go. It can take high speed sequential shots, has autofocus and all the displays and adjustments are digital. Having learned film photography, both as a kid and much later in the last few years, on pretty much fully manual cameras, this is challenging for me. I like many of the shots and it is a great camera, but I likely won’t use it much in Year 2 of my adventure here.

Continuing with the sequence of events, this roll of Agfa Vista 200 covers our visit to the “back side” of the track where the horses live. Even though this meet was much smaller than the summer one, we were not able to actually get inside any of the stables.

We then had the opportunity, again, to stand inside the paddock while the horses were prepared to be saddled and mounted. I noticed a lot more of these horses were skittish and required extra handling. I think they are less experienced than the ones that come in the summer.

The crop of jockeys this time around were just as tiny as the last, in fact some of them looked literally like children, yet they all had that little swagger in their walk.

I popped in a roll of Provia 100 and continued to shoot as the jockeys mounted up.

These two films have a different look. I love them both. Again, we were able to watch a race from the rail. This time it was a mile on turf which meant the horses passed us twice – once at the start and again at the finish line.

After this the group continued for a tour of the press box, a part I missed last time due to time constraints. The view from the press level is pretty cool.

Finally I popped in a roll of expired Kodak C41 process black and white film. The shots came out grainy but kind of suited to the locale. I got some shots of the officials in the press box area

We also got to see the weighing of the jockeys I referred to in my last post. Apparently, both before and after each race, each jockey is weighed holding his saddle This is to ensure no high jinks have occurred such as jettisoning of weights during the race, etc.

Finally, I got a few shots of the trumpeter who plays the call to the post before each race. This outfit is different than the one he wears during the summer season. Apparently he is quite the trumpet player and occasionally busts out a tune after the last race, although I’ve never heard him.


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