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Photographer Ellen Rennard has a series about horse racing. (Ellen Rennard)

100 Words: On The Enduring Culture Of Horse Racing

by Ellen Rennard
Nov 9, 2011

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Ellen Rennard

Forty years ago, when horse racing was the most popular spectator sport in America, I rode a horse around the exercise track at Arlington Park and entertained a fleeting dream of becoming a jockey. Decades later, I returned to photograph at The Downs at Albuquerque and found much that appeared unchanged.

In spite of what remains, racing has declined; many tracks have closed or added casinos to generate income. Yet true horsemen and women endure. They are the ones who said to me, "We need you to tell our side of the story," and that is what I aim to do.

Ellen Rennard is a photographer and teacher at Groton School, in Groton, Mass. She writes book reviews for Fraction Magazine and photo-eye, and is working on a book on The Downs at Albuquerque. The images are currently on display at the Panopticon Gallery in Boston. More of her work can be found on Fotovisura.

100 Words is a series in which photographers describe their work, in their own words. Curated by Graham Letorney

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