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Old 9th May 2012
Swordfish Swordfish is offline
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Historic motor racing at Donington Park

Went to Donington with my car club on Sunday to watch some Historic Car racing and tried my hand at photographing the action.

I found it pretty frustrating due to my lack of experience doing this and also the problem of restricted view at Donington through the chain link catch fencing. However here are a few offerings:

First as it was historic cars I thought a B&W treatment would be appropriate. A Ferrari 250 SWB and Aston Martin DB4 in hot pursuit of an AC Ace:



This wouldn't work in B&W - Hot Lips!



A superb Ferrari 250SWB on the way to a race win, driven by Jackie Oliver:



And finally a couple of awesome Group C Sportscars from the 80's, an Aston Martin AMR1 and a Spice SE89:



Martin
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Old 9th May 2012
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Re: Historic motor racing at Donington Park

Quote:
Originally Posted by Swordfish View Post

I found it pretty frustrating due to my lack of experience doing this and also the problem of restricted view at Donington through the chain link catch fencing. However here are a few offerings:
Hi Martin
I liked looking at your pictures. The B&W job really gave it that bygone year feel.

I wonder if your frustration is down to your camera settings.

I've taken a few pictures at F1 and British Super Bike practice days and find that motor racing needs a different approach from most other photo subjects.

I have both the 50-200SWD and bigma with an E3.

If you want some help I can share my experiences and there have been one or two other posts about this subject which you may find helpful. Look at the exif data at what others are using to capture the effect you are looking for. What I find is that for the action shots I use shutter priority and work around 1/300sec hand holding and panning with AF-C using 11 points (E3) high frame rate.

There is another thread where someone was asking about motor racing photos which you may find helpful.

http://e-group.uk.net/forum/showthread.php?t=19984

Hope this helps.
John
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Old 9th May 2012
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Re: Historic motor racing at Donington Park

I like these. Nos 1 and 4 for me.

Thanks for sharing.
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Old 10th May 2012
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Re: Historic motor racing at Donington Park

Thanks John. I was using the 50-200 and Bigma also on an E5. I found that I had to use a wide aperture to lose the fencing and as it was a bright day this obviously meant pretty high shutter speeds - which was not a problem for most of these shots.

My attempts at panning shots were not very good- mainly because of the fencing and choice of positions to photograph from.

If I try again I might go to somewhere like Mallory Park without the fencing etc.

Martin
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Old 10th May 2012
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Re: Historic motor racing at Donington Park

Nice pictures, those old cars really have got character.
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Re: Historic motor racing at Donington Park

Hi Martin

I think the fencing has become a real issue for photographers at race circuits I know its in the name of safety, but motor racing is a dangerous sport. I think that for some that is the attraction.

I think if you look at depth of field calculations with the bigma taken circa 15-20m from the track it should not be an issue. With the bigma at f11 and 20m from cars the depth of field is 0.5m so the fencing should not be a problem. I would really suggest that you try and use shutter priority. I have used the bigma on my E3 hand held (IS2) panning bikes through fencing using AF-C and then taking the shot where there is gap often by a marshalling point. I keep the shutter half pressed while panning. I think the E3 and I would expect the E5 to perform better used with the bigma seems to excel with motor sports when you get the technique right. Its worth putting a lot of effort in trying different settings and then studying them to see what works for you.

Try and find when practice days are on they are the best time IMO to experiment with panning technique technique.

Good Luck
John
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Old 10th May 2012
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Re: Historic motor racing at Donington Park

Quote:
Originally Posted by Swordfish View Post

If I try again I might go to somewhere like Mallory Park without the fencing etc.

Martin
Far better for picture taking.
I went to Donington but due to the crap position (for photo's) we had, I did not even get the camera out
Better off going on my own and doing my own thing
At Donington you are better off on the in-field opposite the Craner Curves as there is no catch fence.

Taken from the in-field








Liking pictures 1&4. To my eye the Ferrari would be better with a slower shutter so that the wheels and back ground are "moving" to show the car is at speed and not looking "parked up".

If you ever go to Mallory let us know and we could meet up for a "play"

Mike
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Old 11th May 2012
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Re: Historic motor racing at Donington Park

If this is your first attempt then I think you have got some positive results.
The B&W treatment suits the shot well although boosting the shadows would bring out more detail. Pit shots are always frustrating because you can't get a clean background.
Donington Park can be frustraing due to the fencing, although it is possible to get good images through the wire. Personally I prefer Cadwell Park, Croft, Oulton Park and Mallory park due to major parts don't have high fences.
I'm going to Donington park this weekend for the World Superbike meeting.

This is a couple taken last year at Donington Park at Mcleans through the fence.



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