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Dodging ducks is all in a day's work...

Photo by Angela Clarke


Today saw the revu photography team enjoying a day away from the studio with the chance to mix business and pleasure photographing at the Chatsworth International Horse Trials . This annual event showcases three days of world class equestrian sport displays as well as providing a shopping village and entertainment for all the family set with the stunning back drop of Chatsworth House. Events of this kind have their roots in a comprehensive cavalry test requiring mastery of several types of riding.

As a photographer, a sports event of this nature poses some particular

challenges, not usually faced in the studio, although it has to be said that some toddlers can move pretty fast when they want to!

Capturing such action requires fast shutter speeds, long lenses and finding the perfect spot to grab those great shots!

The day started early with the customary delicious bacon butty from

Chatsworth Grill before putting the cameras to work. The Show Jumping and the Dressage arenas are both located within the entertainment village with plenty of seating and the opportunity to get up close and watch talented competitors from around the globe demonstrating their skill.

After a break for a hearty piece of cake and a Nutella filled pancake, it was time to head up the hill to watch and shoot the cross country eventing action. This part of the equestrian programme is particularly thrilling, seeing horses and riders tested with some twenty-four to thirty-six fixed and solid obstacles. The object of this test is to prove the speed, endurance and jumping ability of the competitors.

Obstacles can include all those that might be found if riding across the

countryside, such as logs, trees, ditches, banks and water.

It was whilst photographing at the water obstacle this year that the revu team witnessed a near miss of the fluffy feathered kind. During a short lull between competitors we were admiring a mother duck and her 11 adorable tiny fluffy ducklings.

Suddenly she decided to move her brood from the relative safety of the bankside straight in to the path taken by all the horse and riders. Spectators looked on in horror as the whistle blew to signal the approaching rider and we all held our breath....

Thankfully for all watching and in particular the mother duck and ducklings, the skilled and observant rider spotted the potential disaster and despite travelling at some speed, deftly guided his horse around the little feathered family!

Disaster avoided and the smile on the riders face says it all….

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