Super Bikes at Laguna Seca - On The Track! (8 more)

Joined
Feb 21, 2005
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Ottawa, Ontario
Okay, having bored the pants off everyone with my shots from the pits at Laguna Seca's AMA Superbike test session it's time to take 'em to the track.

Given it was just a test session with only three teams present, the pictures are all of single bike/riders.

All shots with D100 and Sigma 80-400mm OS. Handheld.

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145.0mm; 1/200s; f/14.0; Exposure bias: -0.33; matrix; shutter priority; ISO 400


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320.0mm; 1/500s; f/7.1; Exposure bias: -0.33; matrix; aperture priority; ISO 400
It's a bit over-sharpened, but I had awful trouble catching up with him. Man, they're fast!


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250.0mm; 1/500s; f/9.0; Exposure bias: -0.33; matrix; aperture priority; ISO 400


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250.0mm; 1/500s; f/9.0; Exposure bias: -0.33; matrix; aperture priority; ISO 400


Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)

145.0mm; 1/200s; f/14.0; Exposure bias: -0.33; matrix; shutter priority; ISO 400


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400.0mm; 1/250s; f/8.0; Exposure bias: -0.33; spot metered; aperture priority; ISO 400


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250.0mm; 1/500s; f/5.6; matrix; aperture priority; ISO 400


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400.0mm; 1/160s; f/16.0; Exposure bias: -0.33; matrix; shutter priority; ISO 400
Tommy motoring back to the pits. I like that you can read his tacho. :)


I'm really quite pleased for my first time shooting anything this fast. As it is I'm p'd off that I couldn't get a single successful pan of a bike right in front of me. They were gassing it out of the corner and right in front of me up would come the front wheel. If I had any brains I would have moved back either further up the track or back across to the other side of pit road.

Shooting birdies in flight is good practice, but trying to pan these things takes real skill, timing and rhythm. I need to practice - LOTS!

That being said, I STILL can't wipe the smile off my face! Again, special thanks to Andrew Wheeler at http://www.automotophoto.com for getting me the access and for his support and friendship. If you want to see how a pro does it then check out his site.

As always, comments and critiques are more than welcome.

Neil
 
Joined
Mar 9, 2005
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North Jersey
Neil,

Those are excellent. I checked your friend's website and have to say WOW. He knows what he is doing. Thanks for sharing.
 
Joined
Jan 25, 2005
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Alabama
Neil,

These shots are great shots!! I know that most of the credit goes to the photog :wink: , but I am also most impressed by the Sigma lens. You must be very pleased.

Where did you get yours?

Frank
 
Joined
Feb 21, 2005
Messages
609
Location
Ottawa, Ontario
Thanks guys.

Gordon, me too. Seeing how fast these guys really go proved to me one thing - they ARE all mad. :)

Frank, I'm very pleased with the Sigma. It seems sharp across all focal lengths and at most apertures. The only thing I'd like is it for it to be faster (i.e. max aperture is only f/4.5 - 5.6), but what can you expect for less than a grand.

I bought it from B&H.

Thanks again.

Neil
 

PGB

Joined
Jan 25, 2005
Messages
7,986
Neil,

Excellent captures. I love racing. I really want to go to an F1 race this year.

What shutter speeds were you using for these?

Thanks,
 
Joined
Feb 21, 2005
Messages
609
Location
Ottawa, Ontario
Here ya go Paul.

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320.0mm; 1/400s; f/8.0; Exposure bias: -0.33; matrix; aperture priority; ISO 400


This next one is one of my attempts at panning using shutter priority to really convey the impression of speed. I don't think it's a particularly successful shot in that Jamie and his bike aren't as sharp as they should be, but it's a starting point for next time. I think this panning lark is a bit like sex - it's all rhythm and timing. ;)

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180.0mm; 1/160s; f/14.0; Exposure bias: -0.33; matrix; shutter priority; ISO 400


The rest are all at http://www.motifwebs.com/gallery/ama_laguna

I'm glad you're enjoying them. I really can't wait to shoot this sort of stuff again!

Neil
 
Joined
Feb 21, 2005
Messages
609
Location
Ottawa, Ontario
Patrick Bramlett said:
Neil,

Excellent captures. I love racing. I really want to go to an F1 race this year.

What shutter speeds were you using for these?

Thanks,
LOL - you were posting this as I was posting the extra shots for Paul.

Thanks for the kind words Patrick (and everyone else as well), they're much appreciated.

I"ve loved and watched F1 since the late 1960s, but have still never been to an F1 race. That WILL change, but probably not this year due to the outgoings being on camera gear. Certainly, I'll be going to more races of all kinds this year in an attempt to improve my techniques - yes I'm hooked.

Okay, I'll go back and edit the original post to include some EXIF details, although the details can also be seen if you have the little EXIF Reader program from http://www.takenet.or.jp/~ryuuji/minisoft/exifread/english/ - useful little bit of gear. :)

Now to go do a quick edit. :D

Neil
 
Joined
Feb 6, 2005
Messages
3,497
Location
South SF Bay Area, CA.
Neil,

This can't be your first attempt at this, panning and all, can it? :lol::lol: You should be really proud: they are terrific! I also checked out your pro friend's web site and I have to concur that what he's captured is just amazing! I don't know how he gets so much color vibrancy in his images (and what lens did he use?). Now, I'm jealous... and I am not even a motorbike fan! :roll: :lol: 8)
 
Joined
Feb 21, 2005
Messages
609
Location
Ottawa, Ontario
Thank you Philippe.

It really was my first attempt panning anything so fast. Previously all I've tried is with birdies and once with the MUCH slower Formula Dodges at the Skip Barber Racing School (50mph vs 150mph and I'm not exaggerating).

Andrew shoots Canon. Most of those shots on his site are with a 1D, but he's just started using his 1D MkII. The lens he uses is almost always the 300mm f/2.8 IS L or the 70-200mm f/2.8 IS L (I thnk).

I think the really impressive thing about his images is that many of them, including all the F1 shots, are from the spectator areas! He's just now developed the respect and contacts in the motorsports community to the stage where he's getting press credentials.

It shows what can be done with talent and imagination. Frankly, I find his stuff inspiring.

He makes the very valid point that you can take great images by making the best of adverse circumstances. You don't have to accept that there's a fence between you and the shot you want, you merely have to either include it creatively or find a way of not including it.

It's something that's teaching me to aim for a higher standard in my own photography and to stop making excuses for myself. It's the old story I guess - a pro simply doesn't show their mistakes.

Anyway, you didn't ask for a philosophical dogma, but I thought I'd rave on anyway. :D

Thanks so much for your kind words.

Neil
 
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