If you’re planning to attend the Kentucky Derby early next month, you might want to make sure you’ll be content with capturing your memories with a smartphone or point-and-shoot. Churchill Downs, the racetrack that hosts the famous horse race, has unveiled new security measures that will prevent attendees from bringing certain items onto the grounds. Among them: all interchangeable lens cameras.
In addition to interchangeable lens cameras (e.g. DSLRs, mirrorless cameras), the guidelines also prohibit any camera that has a lens longer than 6 inches, tripods, and camcorders.
Churchill Grounds says that the measures were developed after consulting with several law enforcement authorities following the Boston Marathon bombings last week.
The policy reflects a common prejudice against “professional” style cameras. It’s interesting that a $629 entry-level Canon Rebel (a crop-frame camera) with a 18-55mm kit lens will be banned under the new policy, but a professional $2,800 Sony RX1 full frame compact camera will be perfectly acceptable.
…and that a tiny Sony NEX mirrorless camera with a pancake lens will be banned, while a much larger bridge camera with a powerful zoom lens will be perfectly acceptable:
Churchill Downs says that permitted items include:
Small cameras, but none equipped with detachable lenses or lenses more than 6 inches;
Cellular telephones, smartphones and tablets