Michael McInally is a well-known individual in thoroughbred and harness circles, photographing at some of the world’s biggest racing events, but recently he has added greyhound racing to his portfolio, founding Box 1 Photography and becoming the raceday and events photographer at Albion Park.
Passion for photography and racing is a family affair with the McInally’s,
“My whole family was in the racing industry. It started with my grandfather Nev, he started the photography business back in the day and then Dad got into it as well” Michael said.
“I didn’t get forced into it, but I thought, well, let’s give this a go.”
Despite being interested in racing since primary school, it wasn’t until 2008 that Michael turned his hobby into a career.
“I was given a camera for my birthday and that got the ball rolling.”
“I started going around with a decent camera, without an accreditation, standing in the public (areas) and taking different kinds of shots.”
“One little point and shoot camera lead to another bigger (camera), and then another bigger one up to the massive gear I’ve got today.”
Anyone who speaks to Michael would understand how passionate and involved he is in all three codes of the racing industry and it is this passion for the game that has seen him travel across Australia and the world photographing the world’s biggest thoroughbred meetings.
The 2014 and 2015 Melbourne Cups as well as the 2016 Championships in Sydney and the Magic Millions carnival are on his portfolio but an invite to photograph at the 2016 Breeders’ Cup Meeting, the pinnacle of racing in the United States, has probably been the highlight for Michael.
“That was the trip of a lifetime, to be invited over and given accreditation to do whatever I wanted to, have images published and be on the world stage for racing photography.”
“I don’t think it gets much better than that. The sky’s the limit.”
McInally and Toby Coutts make up Box 1 Photography, a new company formed to service the race-day photography needs of industry participants at the Brisbane Greyhound Racing Club.
Michael, Toby and their small team bring a wealth of experience in race-day photography and are priding themselves on developing a range of innovative shots to provide a differentiated photography experience. In their short time with the club, they’ve employed cameras above the boxes for feature races, as well as cameras inside the track and using various low-angle and wide-angle shots to capture the story of a race.
“I wanted to come in with fresh eyes, and see if I could take it a different way rather than just the greyhound passing the winning post.”
“If we can have a remote setup on the infield, or a camera at the boxes it’s all different stuff that a normal person wouldn’t get to see.”
“Each greyhound is different and each race is different, so you have to look to find that point of difference (with the photography).”
Box 1 Photography have signed on as a sponsor of the Brisbane Greyhound Racing Club and will hold the naming rights to February’s Group 3 Queensland Cup over 600m.
“It’s very exciting. It’s an awesome opportunity to (sponsor) a Group 3, we have some great races up here and the Queensland Cup is definitely one of them.”
“It’s going to be an awesome night.”
Photos from Albion Park race meetings are available almost immediately after each race, and anyone wishing to view photographs or purchase images can visit www.box1photography.com or call Michael on 0437 308 495.