Shannons Nationals Round 4 at Sydney Motorsport Park for 2016
Last weekend saw me back at home race track, Sydney Motorsport Park, for just the second time this year. This time it was for the fourth round Shannons Nationals.
Instead of telling the tale of something that happened on the race track. For this rounds blog post, I thought I’d give a bit of a break down as to how a day at a race track plays out for a motorsport photographer. So here is the run down of how my Sunday out at Sydney Motorsport Park for the Shannons Nationals went…
The day kicked off for me at 5am. Opting to give myself a couple of extra minutes of precious sleep. I’d given myself just 20 minutes to get organised and fed before rushing out the door to get to the track. Even though Sydney Motorsport Park is my “local track”, it still takes about an hour and half drive to drive there.
I made good time, arriving at the track just before 7am. But I had a busy morning booked, stopping in at the ARDC Cafe to get a quick caffeine hit, before setting up in the media center to catch up posting articles from the day before (that had come in over night).
7:30am the phone rings. My photo shoot for the morning, a Ferrari 488 GTB, has arrived. I ran over to the pit complex for the South Circuit. It was the perfect time for the shoot as the sun’s just risen over the track which was covered in a light fog. That perfect combination of light and atmosphere. It made for some stunning images that I’ll have to share in a later blog post. Once they’ve been published.
By 8am, the shoot was done. I’d already packed up and rushed back over to the main pit garages to get photos of my drivers in Formula 3 getting ready to jump into their cars for their first race of the day (second of the weekend) at 8:30am.
By the time they’d headed out to the grid, I was already on the roof of the pit complex at Sydney Motorsport Park. The great thing about the this spot, is that it allows you to photograph the race start, Turn 4 and Turn 9 (I use the old turn number from the original track design when the track was called Eastern Creek Raceway). Since I’d already done a lot of running around Friday and Saturday. I was in a position where I’d already supplied my drivers with a good selection of photos from other location around the track. Leaving Sunday to focus on more personal shots of the drivers and any action shots that might have eventuated.
I repeated the process for my drivers competing in Formula 4 and Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge which were the next two categories to run. Although the hour long race for the Porsches allowed me enough time to walk up to Turn 10, back to Turn 9 and then across to Turn 4. Adding a few more action shots to my collection from the weekend.
I didn’t have any prior bookings for customers in the Australian Production Cars Series or the Australian GT Trophy Series. But I like to make sure I’ve got photos of every car, so I’ve got something to supplied the media outlets I work with. It also covers me should I get an enquiry about photos after a race meeting. So I stayed track side to get a few more angles of both categories (in addition to what I already had from Friday and Saturday).
By 11:30am it’s back to the media center. I downloaded my photos from the morning onto my computer. I had just enough time to grab a quick bite to eat. It’s worth noting that the media center lunches at Sydney Motorsport Park have definitely improved this year.
12:00pm I headed back out and photograph the Formula 4 field as they got ready to head out on the grid for their second race of day, and final race of the weekend. They’d decided to use a different start procedure for this race, and push their cars on to the grid prior to a quick grid walk. Which gave me an opportunity to run around a get a variety of shots of the drivers getting ready with their cars out on the grid.
Although Formula 3 and Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge used their conventional start process. I repeated the process of getting photos of the drivers getting ready heading out to the dummy grid for both categories.
Having already covered the Australian GT Trophy Series and Production Cars in the morning. I’d given myself the opportunity to skip the second Australian GT race. It allowed me to focus my attention on my customers who had made it onto the Formula 3 and Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge podiums. Being able to have a quick chat to customers after a successful weekend is always a rewarding experience. As well as capturing those all to important celebration photos.
Then it was back the media center. I quickly downloaded my cards, before sorting and editing photos. The idea was to get this done, and those photos uploading to customers, with enough time to get back out to the track and use the sunset to create some more stunning photos. I didn’t quite make it in time, but I did get out to snap a couple of photos of the final laps of the Production Cars race.
With the sun now set, I made one last stop into the media center, to make sure that all my customer photos had uploaded. Then type out a couple of articles and press releases to finalise my obligations at the track, before packing up and making the trek back home.
I made it home a little 8pm. Which gave me a couple of hours to sort out my photos for the media outlets I work with. Then finalise some of my own articles. Rounding out the day at about 10:30pm. A successful and rather productive day.
Now if you’d like to know more about how the on track action went throughout the Shannons Nationals at Sydney Motorsport. Check out these articles below that feature a collection of my photos from thought out the weekend.
- Brake Marker – http://www.brakemarker.com.au/2016/07/shannons-nationals-friday-wrap-sydney-motorsport-park/
- Brake Marker – http://www.brakemarker.com.au/2016/07/taylor-storms-second-australian-gt-trophy-series-pole/
- Brake Marker – http://www.brakemarker.com.au/2016/07/epic-battles-record-pace-porsche-gt3-cup-challenge/
- Brake Marker – http://www.brakemarker.com.au/2016/07/rowe-on-top-of-formula-4-at-sydney-motorsport-park/
- Brake Marker – http://www.brakemarker.com.au/2016/07/champ-bounces-back-counts-formula-3/
- Brake Marker – http://www.brakemarker.com.au/2016/07/taylor-takes-australian-gt-trophy-series-nail-biter/
- Brake Marker – http://www.brakemarker.com.au/2016/07/hardeman-miles-claim-milestone-porsche-gt3-cup-challenge-honours/
- Brake Marker – http://www.brakemarker.com.au/2016/07/radicals-go-smith-smith/
- Brake Marker – http://www.brakemarker.com.au/2016/07/thrilling-bmw-battle-australian-production-car-series/
- Brake Marker – http://www.brakemarker.com.au/2016/07/macrow-gets-40th-formula-3-victory/
- Brake Marker – http://www.brakemarker.com.au/2016/07/nick-rowe-gets-first-formula-4-victory/
- Brake Marker – http://www.brakemarker.com.au/2016/07/sun-sets-australian-production-car-series-sydney/
My Favourite Photos from the Shannons Nationals at Sydney Motorsport Park
Since this has already been a rather wordy blog post, I’ll try keep this part brief. The photo I picked out to be the cover photo for this blog post was one of the final photos I took of during Sunday afternoons Australian Production Cars race. With the sun set, the sky turn brilliant shade of pink and purple. Combined with the cars headlights as they race to the chequered flag. All the elements come together to create a rather unique photo that sums up the final endurance race of the weekend.
I’ve put together a small collection of my other favourite photos from the weekend below. Some of these I’ve already shared on my Facebook page throughout the weekend. But you can check out a collection of my customers photos on my Facebook page, if you are interested.
That was it from me from the Shannons Nationals at Sydney Motorsport Park. I’m back on the road in a couple of days for the next round of the Virgin Australia Supercars up in Townsville. I’ll also be at the next round of the Shannons Nationals at Queensland Raceway in about a months time.