alan frost photography

in monochrome with occasional colour lapses

Posts from the ‘motor sport’ category

Goodwood Revival – a new gallery page

I have just added a new gallery to this site which features 35 images of this world famous annual event – to see this collection of photographs just click on this link – Goodwood Revival Gallery Page

I have been going to The Goodwood Revival for more years than I care to mention, but it was only in 2012 and 2014 that I decided to concentrate on just taking photographs and not spend quite so much time watching the racing itself. My main aim was to try and capture the wonderful atmosphere of what is really the biggest fancy dress party in the world. All mixed with the sights, sounds, smells and pure glamour of a motor sport from by gone era.

To give you a flavour of the collection I have included a small selection of photographs in this post but to see the complete gallery please click here.

 

 

 

 

 

 

I do hope you will take some time to visit this gallery and if you do, please click on the thumbnails and view a larger version of each image.

Below are links to previous entries which relate to the Goodwood Revival Meeting.

2012

The Silver Arrows at the Goodwood Revival Meeting

The Characters of the Goodwood Revival Meeting

Goodwood Revival Meeting – the last entry

2014

Goodwood Revival – the cars and the people

The British Grand Prix at Silverstone – a belated report

Rosberg through Becketts

Rosberg through Becketts
Probably my favourite shot from the Grand Prix.
Nothing is sharp, but there is movement both in the car and also in the sweeping lines of the track at Becketts corner.

 

I have to admit it feels rather bizarre writing this entry at the end of December, when this great sporting event took place back in early July. Perhaps it just sums up how busy the year has been.

Despite being a keen follower of F1 for many years, I had never been to a Grand Prix, so when my good friend suggested we might go, it was an opportunity too good to miss. It was a special occasion as it was also the 50th Anniversary of the British Grand Prix.

We attended all four days and to avoid the worst of the traffic (it can be notoriously bad) we arrived on Wednesday evening, pitched the caravan and didn’t leave until Monday morning. Whilst I took a fair number of photographs, this was never going to be an outing with my camera, as I wanted to enjoy the racing, the atmosphere, the people and the whole experience, which is what we both did.

The rain came and went, as it always seems to do during the British Summer of sport, but this did nothing to spoil the racing in fact it only added to the drama. For anyone who follows F1 you will know that Lewis Hamilton misjudged how quickly the track would dry out in qualifying, and others, including his own team mate Nico Rosberg posted quicker lap times, leaving Hamilton in 6th place on the grid, and Rosberg on pole. The tight duel between them was nicely set up for a thrilling race, which Hamilton won, much to the delight of the home crowd. He was of course helped by Rosberg breaking down with a gearbox problem which happened right in front of us. The partisan crowd around us rather unsportingly cheered loudly as Rosberg, with head looking towards the ground, walked away.

The tide had started to turn in Hamilton’s favour and the rest of the season is now history. Hamilton won his second Formula One Championship and joined an elite number of British drivers who had won the title more than once. The others being Graham Hill, Jim Clark and Jackie Stewart. Only time will tell if Lewis Hamilton will go on to win more titles.

The photographs included in this entry hopefully capture some of the flavour and atmosphere of being at a Formula One race. Even with a 200mm (400mm equivalent) telephoto lens on the Olympus EM1, it is not easy getting close to the action, and even when you can, a wire fence will be between you and the track.

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Coming up – Goodwood Revival

In less than three weeks time one the best motor sport events in the world takes place at Goodwood in West Sussex. The Revival Meeting.

Ferrari 250 GTO
Ferrari 250GTO at Goodwood Revival in 2010

The car which is almost certainly destined for an appearance is the Ferrari 250 GTO as shown in the above shot. This car is owned by Nick Mason of Pink Floyd, a true ‘petrol head’ and car enthusiast. If  you are ever in doubt as to whether or not the GTO you are looking at belongs to him, then just take a look at the number plate……. ‘250GTO’ and you will know instantly.

I shall be attending this year’s event on two of the three days. I had wondered whether or not I would have sufficient images from past meetings together with the one coming up, to put together fifteen photographs for my ‘A’ panel submission to the Royal Photography Society. I will have to wait and see. If I thought I had sufficient numbers of the desired quality then I would definitely consider processing the images in a way which harks back to the black and white films which would have been used in the 1950’s and 60’s. So by way of an experiment I downloaded a 30 day trial version of DxO FilmPack 4. It differs from Silver Efex Pro2, which I have used for many black and white conversions, so I find it quite interesting to compare the results from both pieces of software.

One of the highly regarded black and white films of the post war era was made by Kodak and called Tri-X 400. I used the DxO FilmPack 4 preset for this film type as the starting point for processing the above photograph, which was taken on a Nikon D90 back in 2010. I like the grain and contrast this preset provides but I will try others as well.

I also need to experiment more with this software on a variety of different images before deciding whether or not to buy the full version. With days now running out I expect I will, if only to add this piece of software to my growing armoury of processing techniques.

What I can be sure of is that in a few weeks time there will be a number of entries relating to the Goodwood Revival Meeting. Quite simply if offers so many photographic opportunities, not just of the cars but also the characters, both drivers and spectators alike.  

LRPS – The Final Ten

In the last two or three weeks I have been deliberating which ten images should make up my panel for the LRPS assessement day coming up at the beginning of December. The easiest decision was that they should all be black and white photos; colour was never really on the agenda. The Royal Photographic Society (RPS) do look for variety of shot for the Licentiateship Distinction,  as well as technical competence and the panel itself should be a cohesive unit. The eleventh image as it has been termed. With help from a fellow club member the final ten have now been selected and the layout finalised. It only remains for me to print and mount all of them and I will be set for the big day.

I also attended an RPS Distinction advisory day last weekend when two panel judges offered advice on a good number of ‘L’ and ‘A’ panels. Some were clearly of the standard required, whilst others fell short of the mark. It made for a most interesting time but fortunately it didn’t change my final selection. I did not have the opportunity to show my own panel for critique, so whether or not it will pass I do not know. I understand there are five judges and a Chairperson on the day itself, so when my turn comes it will be quite nerve wracking.

The panel is made up with a mix of people shots and landscapes, many of which have already appeared in this blog. Number one in the panel will be this shot taken of Stefan Majoram drawing one of the Auto Union Silver Arrows at the Goodwood Revival Meeting back in September. I used the Olympus EM5 and Lumix 20mm prime lens at f2.5.

An Artist drawing one of the Silver Arrows

It’s the first time I have printed this image and I am really pleased with how it has turned out. I’m keeping my fingers crossed that the judges will share the same opinion.

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Aston Martin DB9 driving experience

This was not really a photo opportunity, but a chance to drive an Aston Marin DB9 on a test track at Longcross in Surrey, courtesy of a belated Christmas present and 6th Gear Driving Experience. I was booked in for three quick laps; me at the wheel and a trained racing driver instructor in the passenger seat. No speed limit, no speed cameras, no traffic police but some nerves which would prevent me from doing anything too dangerous, particularly as it had not stopped raining all day and the track was very wet.

I was unsure what to expect when I arrived at Longcross. There were a lot of people waiting their for turn to drive a range of supercars. Audi R8, Lamborghini, Ferrari, Ariel Atom and of course the Aston Martin amongst the marques. I was scheuled to drive at 3.30pm but after a long wait under an umbrella my name was finally called, about an hour later. I was introduced to my instructor and shown the basic controls, including the ‘flappy paddles’ for changing gear. He told me he would instruct me when to accelerate, brake, change up or down and where to position the car on the track. It felt a very controlled situation but perhaps it had to me given how powerful the car was, the track conditions and the fact there was very little run off. Most of the track was enclosed by unforgiving trees so a small mistake could be costly to both man and beast…..not that the DB9 could be called a beast……more the beauty then the beast.

I soon overcame any nerves and it was not long before a Lamborghin Gallardo appeared ahead of us on the track going more slowly. I was delighted when we reached a section of straight…..the instructor checked the mirrors, no one close behend, so he gave me the word to plant my foot on the accelerator and overtake. The sound of the V12 engine came to life as the revs increased. In no time at all, I had hit nearly 90 miles an hours, passsed the Gallardo, only to be told it was time to brake before the next corner. An experience to remember.

The three laps were thrilling but over all too quickly, so out came the Olympus OMD and the 45mm to 200mm Panasonic Lumix zoom lens to record the event. The rain still came down so whilst the light was terrible, the reflections off the tarmac surface made for some interesting reflections.

Aston Martin DB9….ready and waiting
Olympus OMD 45-200mm @ 109mm f9 1/20 ISO 1250

Aston Martin DB9 preparing for a few more laps

Aston Martin DB9….on the track
Olympus OMD 45-200mm @ 45mm f4.5 1/60 ISO 1600

Aston Martin DB9 in the rain at Longcross

Lamborghin Gallardo Spyder
Olympus OMD 45-200mm @ 103mm f9 1/60 ISO 1250

Lamborghini Gallardo Spyder

Ariel Atom and the spray
Olympus OMD 45-200mm @ 61mm f9 1/20 ISO 1600

Ariel Atom in the rain at Longcross

Ferrari 458
Olympus OMD 45-200mm @ 115mm f5.6 1/20 ISO 1250

Ferrari 458

Although I have not had many reasons to use the 45-200mm lens very often, I am impressed. But what impressed me more was the built in 5 axis image stabilisation of the OMD. Although the 45-200 has built in IS, it was turned off, as I assumed it would be fighting the Olympus IS. If you look at the exif data on some of these shots, take the Ferrari above for example, this was taken at 1/20 second and is as sharp as you could expect given the conditions. The 35mm or full frame equivalent of 115mm is 230mm, so to hand hold this camera and lens and still be able to shoot at such a low shutter speed just demonstartes how good the Image Stabilisation is in the OMD. Well done Olympus!