Stunning images from horse racing's photographer of the year

    (CNN)With man and beast straining every sinew against a backdrop of stunning scenery, it's no wonder the sport of kings lends itself to incredible photography.

    Whether it's gripping action, colorful crowd scenes or spectacular venues, horse racing offers a rich shooting gallery for photographers.
    Among the world's best is Edward Whitaker of the UK's Racing Post, who has been named racing's photographer of the year for the second consecutive time, his ninth overall.
      His latest accolade was for a portfolio of six stunning photographs taken over the last 12 months.
        Humble about his achievement, he says part of his success is down to his ability to pick a "balanced" portfolio which demonstrates the many different aspects of photography.
        "It's lovely to be recognized by your peers and I'm just very happy," he told CNN Sport, saying he already has his eyes on a 10th title.
        "It's just fortunate I'm quite good at picking which ones to submit."
        Edward Whitaker has been named horse racing photographer of the year on nine occasions.

        'Taking a photograph is simple'

        One of Whitaker's favorite photographs from the portfolio was taken of racehorse Tiger Roll, on his way to winning back-to-back Grand Nationals in April.
        Tiger Roll made a memorable late burst at Aintree and Whitaker's picture depicts the diminutive racehorse leaping over one of the track's infamous water jumps.
        However, despite the wonder horse in shot, he says the background is the real star of the show.
        "What really makes the picture is the birch hitting into the blue dyed water. There is so much life in the splash," he said, revealing the picture was taken remotely by a camera pointing up behind the fence.