UPDATED / A Keeneland Saturday: Through the Eyes and Lens of Holly M. Smith

Editor’s Note:

We are very fortunate in life to meet people that we admire and enjoy. Such is the case with this “old dog.” Along my life’s travels, I have had the opportunity to not only shake hands with some of the best, but also to now call them friends and associates. And, such is the case, too, with the young, talented, personable and amazing Holly M. Smith.

She is comfortable with the word. She is special with the camera. And, we are so very fortunate and lucky to now be able to call Holly “our very own” photographer.

Early on Saturday, I got an email from a long-time friend, who works in the horse industry. He inquired as to the photographer that has supplied so many great captures and memories over the past three years. When I relayed Holly’s name and credentials, he responded with applause.

And, Holly deserves both the credits and the kind acknowledgements. She is that good. And, we are so very lucky to have her on “our team.”

Here is Holly’s “Saturday’s Views” of Keeneland:

(Maxfield wins and returns to the Keeneland winner’s circle in the infield after a sweeping and exciting run in the Claiborne Breeders’ Futurity / Photos by Holly M. Smith)

(Uni upset the apple cart and her stablemate Rushing Fall to capture the G1 First Lady Stakes over the firm Keeneland grass — in record setting time / Photos by Holly M. Smith)

(Spiced Perfection nearly dropped rider Javier Castellano at the start, but the filly rallied to win the TCA Stakes / Photos by Holly M. Smith)

(Stubbins was styling in victory / Photos by Holly M. Smith)

(The big win, though, was reserved for Bowies Hero in the G1 Shadwell Turf Mile at Keeneland on Saturday. Flavien Prat guided him to a perfect trip and was all smiles at the end. / Photos by Holly M. Smith

The horse broke well today,” Gaffalione said. “I had the horse inside, Dunph, going to the lead and then (Gun It) showed a little bit of speed. When I saw they were intent on going I just tried to get him back and got him to relax. He came back to me nicely and settled well down the backside. Got a little keen going into the far turn and wanted to move a little early. But I didn’t want to take too much away from him so I tried to sit as long as I could. He was waiting on horses down the lane but I kept him at task and there was plenty of horse there.”

“Mark (Casse, the trainer) and his team have done a great job,” Gaffalione said. “They’ve had a ton of confidence in this horse the whole way. It’s just an honor to be able to ride the horse. He’s just so professional, trains great and he’s a pleasure to be around.”

Tyler Gaffalione, Rode of War of Will to victory in the G2 Risen Star Stakes at the Fair Grounds
  • Gene McLean

    Gene McLean

    Gene McLean began his professional career in 1977 as a sportswriter and columnist for the Lexington Herald-Leader in Lexington, Ky., and was recognized as one of the state’s best writers, winning the prestigious “Sportswriter of the Year” honor in 1985. Now the President and Publisher of The Pressbox, McLean sets ...

    Full Bio >

More From Gene McLean