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‘PHOTO DAY II’ DEEMED HUGE SUCCESS, SANTA ANITA PLAYS HOST TO 356 PHOTOGS ON FRIDAY
ARCADIA, Calif. (Oct. 7, 2011)—Santa Anita staged its second Photography Day on Friday, attracting 356 photographers who immersed themselves in a variety of activities from morning workouts, an “A List” speakers panel and an afternoon of world class racing that was deemed a tremendous success by management and participants alike.
“It is tremendous to see the enthusiasm and the passion these people have for our sport,” said Santa Anita Vice President of Sales and Marketing Chris Quinn. “In many cases, photography is a hobby for some of these people, others are professionals. All of them share a love and appreciation for the horse and the aesthetics that only Santa Anita can offer.
“Registration began at Clockers’ Corner at 7:30 a.m. and it’s great to see all of these photographers fanning out on the apron from the top of the stretch to the wire, shooting images of horses on the track. The mountains here provide an incredible backdrop and we had crystal clear conditions this morning as well.”
Immediately following training at 10 a.m., HRTV’s Scott Hazelton moderated a speakers panel that included jockey Chantal Sutherland, trainers John Shirreffs and Jeff Metz, and Tom Abahazy of Benoit Photo.
“Scott did a great job with the panel and the photographers were not only taking pictures, but some of them were asking some great questions as well,” said Quinn.
Not surprisingly, one of the first questions posed to Shirreffs centered on the status of the now-retired Zenyatta, who resides in Kentucky and is in foal to Bernardini.
“She’s put on some weight,” said Shirreffs. “She remembers everybody. Horses know their family grouping and they make attachments that they carry with them.”
Shirreffs was then asked about the mental makeup of racehorses.
“Thoroughbreds are bred to run, they’re all bred to run. What separates them is their level of ability…and they know when they win,” he added.
Sutherland, who won the Grade I Santa Anita Handicap in March and the Oct. 1, Grade I Goodwood Stakes at Santa Anita aboard Game on Dude, faces the camera not only as an active jockey, but as an actress and model as well. She has appeared in Vogue Magazine, Sports Illustrated and has a prominent role in LUCK, an upcoming series on HBO.
“When I studied at university, there was always the argument ‘Is it art or is it photography?’” said Sutherland. “I think when a photographer is able to capture the essence of your emotion and thought, that is art. Photography is an integral part of promoting our business I love seeing pictures of horses in motion.”
Quinn noted that Santa Anita will continue to reach out through social media and all other means to reach new audiences in an effort to appeal to and create new fans.
“I really think the success of our Photo Days is an indication that we’re beginning to tap into a love and a passion that has always existed but that for various reasons, has been kept quiet for quite a few years,” said Quinn.
“I’d really like to acknowledge Benoit Photo’s role in the success of this event. They’ve stepped up and have been of great assistance in our efforts to reach out to the photographic community at-large.
“We’re hoping that those photographers who have taken the time to come here and participate with us will continue to follow their respective passions and become ambassadors for Santa Anita and racing in general. We view all of these people as a potential resource and we plan to develop our relationship in the future,” he added.
Photography Day photos will be submitted to and posted at www.santaanita.com /photographyday.