His father was a legendary royal correspondent, but when young Edward Whitaker tagged along to watch Prince Charles play polo he was more fascinated by the phalanx of photographers.
From that early interest blossomed an illustrious career in which Whitaker has become a doyen of horse racing photography.
Last year Whitaker won racing’s photographer of the year award for the eighth time as well as picture of the year with his stunning image of a horse in front of a super blue blood moon.
The lunar occurrence is rare – happening every 150 years or so – and so Whitaker was determined not to miss his moment.
He recruited the help of trainer Nicky Henderson’s secretary Carolyn Harty to pose on her horse, and they set off before dawn for the Mandown gallops in Lambourne, England on January 31, 2018.
“I knew a place where the moon set and where the angle would be right, so I was at the bottom of the hill shooting up to the top,” he told CNN Sport.
“It’s about the moon, isn’t it, but the way the horse is arching his neck – there is something very pleasing about it.”
The image was part of a portfolio of six which earned Whitaker the photographer of the year award as well as the main picture prize, the first time anyone has done the double.
“Photography is very subjective, you do what you can and you just hope people enjoy your work. It’s nice when it’s acknowledged and you’re recognised by your peers,” said Whitaker, whose father James was a well known royal writer and broadcaster.