As any sport, horse racing has its very own collection of desirable memorabilia. Whether these items honour the human or equine legends of the sport, horse racing fans hunger after their sports' artefact just as much as the soccer fan longs for an autographed ball by his favourite goalie.
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Considering the grace and sheer beauty of the racing thoroughbred it is not surprising that horse racing photographs are hot property amongst horse racing aficionados. Action shots are particularly popular in the jump racing scene and some of the footage of horses seemingly flying over the fences is truly stunning. However, the flat also offers hero shots, from photo finishes to depictions of the moments after the race; a true collector can find plenty of horse racing memorabilia treasures in a horse racing photographer's collection.
Naturally there are especially elegant items available. Framed photographs of big race winners, often autographed by the jockey, trainer, owner or all of them, can fetch incredible prices in auctions. These special editions are rare and hard to find; however, the wonders of the internet are making it easier to track down the horse racing memorabilia you want.
If you would like to check out some prime examples of great equine photography, visit Neil Murray Photos, Cheryl A. Quigley and Premier Equine Art.
While photographs of racehorses are the most popular feature of horse racing memorabilia, there is a host of other items which collectors are willing to pay good money for.
The next time you go to the track, think twice about throwing your race card in the trash; especially if the day has brought some truly legend-worthy wins. Race cards from big race days at racecourses like Ascot in the UK or Churchill Downs, the home of the Kentucky Derby, are auctioned at live events and over the internet, and are surprisingly hot property with collectors.
These items of horse racing memorabilia are harder to get a hold of than race cards and photographs, and are therefore fetching much higher prices with collectors. A winning jockey's racing silks will usually enter the collectors scene through a charity auction before being offered for sale by a private collector if you are lucky. However, saddle cloths and silks can be a great investment, as they are likely in increase in value over time.
Thoroughbred horses have inspired many artists over the years and today paintings and drawings of race horses are still very desirable for passionate collectors. Whether you purchase an image of your favourite runner or commission an artist specialising in equine portraiture to immortalise your personal champion, these pictures will always find a place to live within the racing community should you decide to sell them one day.
When you are looking for a collectible horse racing book, you need to learn to think outside the box. Sure, biographies of jockeys, trainers and even horses do exist, but these are only valuable if signed by the celebrity they are dealing with. However, books like Timeform Collections, Thoroughbred Pedigree Books and annual race horse almanacs make a collectors heart beat faster. Sometimes these sought after items can be found randomly at markets and charity stores; other times you will have to go hunting on the net.
Horse Racing UK wishes you the best of luck with your future endeavours of collecting race horse memorabilia. If you come across a hidden treasure trove you feel your fellow racing fans and collectors should know about, do not hesitate to drop us a line and we will spread the word for you.