Keeneland blossoms into spring

Before the sun is up, horses are on the track. Riders in thick jackets and leather chaps ease them up the stretch and gallop them back down, around the turn. Hooves pound. Puffs of steam pour from big nostrils. The grandstand casts a giant shadow, holding winter’s last chill.


This video was shot with the Canon 5D Mark II on a beautiful morning before the Keeneland Race Track 2009 spring meet was to open in Lexington. I used the 24-105 f/4 IS and the 70-200 f/2.8 with the TCEII teleconverter. All shot with a Gitzo tripod and 2180 fluid head – with one exception: there is a brief shot where I used a Glidecam 2000 steady cam. First time I’d used it – need to practice!!

I love shooting at Keeneland – who doesn’t, really? This was the first chance I had to shoot at Keeneland during a race meet with the 5D Mark II. Weather was good, light was nice, time was right. I got out at the track before sunrise with no intent other than to just shoot and see what came out of it. I shortly ran into HL photog Charles Bertram (no big surprise there – he was working on a daily piece for the paper to preview the opening day of the meet).

Not long after that, I spotted HL columnist Tom Eblen shooting photos. He’s a darn good photographer and shoots his own photos to go with his column. After he gave me the general idea of what he was doing, it seemed to fit perfectly with what I was shooting. A few hours later at lunch time, I recorded him reading his column. I kept the beginning and the end as they were, and spliced up the middle to fit my clips and for brevity.

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3 Responses to “Keeneland blossoms into spring”

  1. Just saw the Keeneland Video….you are always stepping up and hitting it out of the park.

    I love the video because there were so many great still images throughout the whole piece.
    I love it when a still photographer shoots great video….it really shows what has lacked to often in the video world. Congrats

  2. seth says:

    I don’t give a crap about horses. That being said, this video made me want to see more of this subject matter! It’s beautiful! I love seeing things other than weddings shot with the 5DMKII. Incredible footage, great job!

  3. [...] the Kentucky Derby. Doubly odd about his timing was the fact that I had that very day posted the Keeneland Blossoms video which previewed the spring meet and Keeneland Race [...]