BSB to Finish my Season

Well…. Thats is the end of 2019 for CMC-Images and it has been an outstanding season, Firstly once again working with the Scottish Daily Record i need to thank Giles and the team who have once again supported my 2019 season and stuck with me throughout so for that i thank you, Lets go into 2020 and push for bigger and better than before,

The start of the year i changed my focus after 10 years shooting mostly 4 wheels i have been working hard in the British Superbike Championship. The best domestic 2 wheel championship in the world by far, Thanks to the MSV BSB Media team for there support throughout the season, Its great to see the hard work and dedication you guys put in to each round making it so professionally run.

Donington Park saw my last event of the season for a number of reasons which won’t be discussed on this post but i wish some things were different for me to attend Brands Hatch for the finally as i have dreamt of processing further in the photography career.

Qualifying day on Saturday morning everyone was preparing for a wet and windy weekend but turns out not so much, The weather held up really well on Saturday for a spectacular dat of practice, Qualifying and Racing from the Supersport guys. The season has been dominated by the PBM BeWiser Ducati boys on the spectacular devil red machines, They have been fantastic all season and with two world class riders in Josh Brookes and Scott Redding its been a formidable force for the rest of the pack this year. Scott lead the pack through all weekend and josh was hot on his heels but after a few set up issues seemed to be that little bit slower than his ex Moto GP team mate.

Massive well done to Jack Kennedy for securing the British Supersport Championship and now breaking news signing for the Santander Salt Tag Yamaha Racing team for 2020 with Dan Linfoot as his team mate, Thats going to be a strong team for the season and both yamahas should be strong next season.

Sunday Raceday and a very damp start to the day all the warm ups were completed on a drying circuit with some slight mizzle falling throughout the 20 minute warm up, Everyone looking to see if there is a falling in the ducati armour even in the rain but nope both were in the top 3 of the timing sheets once again, As the day dried out and the sun began to shine we knew this was ducati territory especially on the GP circuit where Scott had so much experience from the days on the GP Circuit. As expected both races were dominated by the forever fast Scott Redding who has now extended his lead in the showdown with now only 3 of the 6 riders mathematically able to win the championship, Weather dependent i believe the Ducs will be untouchable over the weekend and if Redding power wins race 1 i think that’s the championship over.

Above some highlights of the weekend, I will sign this final weekend feature off by thanking everyone for there support,

Ryan Lilly, Nat Jarvis, Vince Pettit, Giles Blair, Thecheckerdflag.co.uk, Scottish Daily Record, Road Record, British Superbike Championship, British Touring Car Championship, Knockhill Racing Circuit,

Once again i am honoured for the opportunity to grow in my work and with 2020 just around the corner i am looking to progress further and if there is any opportunities out there please get in touch via the contact page or email me direct or on my social media pages.

FINALLY …………

Get well soon Ben Godfrey, Horrific accident at donington park completely out of his control ending his season on the stock 1000 JDR racing team, Its been great to chat with you on Instagram. Always keen to share my images and mention a few good words of my work, Hopefully i will be able to snap some more images in 2020, Rest up dude there’s racing to be done next year……….. :)

Ford Ranger Photo Shoot.

With the limited time i have during the week there is nothing more i enjoy than to take a car to a stunning location and get my creative mind engaged. A few weeks ago i picked up a stunning Ford Ranger Wildtrak and took it out into the wilderness of the Scottish Borders Cheviot hills.

The rugged surroundings were perfect for the capabilities of this amazing all round 4x4 pick up truck. The bold Saber Orange colour was a stunning contrast agains the rolling landscape.

The cars amazing colour was bold enough to stand out against the stunning back drops i found around the area, The waterfall was the perfect subject to show off not just the great colour but also the superb performance of this brilliant truck, Around the location they have some amazing trees and abandoned subjects such as the truck which i thought was perfect to use as a backdrop to the modern Ranger.

It’s my passion to work with a Camera every day and to produce beautiful images. I am looking to grow my photography business and work with Manufactures and Brands to grow there products and advertising with an online platform. With my website and online presence if there is anyone looking for a freelance photographer to shoot there cars either for website or online advertising i am available on email on the contact me page.

Moto Gp Silverstone

Where do i begin, I guess it can be fair to say this was the best weekend of the season so far. Can i start by saying thanks to Dorna and well done to Silverstone for you putting on an amazing Grand Prix. From Friday morning the whole signing on and arrival was smooth and effortless as expected from a huge venue like Silverstone.

So begins my 2019 British Moto GP, I arrived in time for FP1 which the excitement of the first hot lap from a Moto GP is always a special moment, The speed sound and the unbelievable talent of the top riders in the world is always a site to see, For the first practice session of the day i was on the inside of Copes corner, A long fast sweeping right hander for people who haven’t visited Silverstone before, For the Moto GP this is turn one. Every lap more and more commitment and more and more rear tyre slides, The smile lasts for the full 45 minute session. Below is a small gallery of images from FP1 shot on the Fuji XT2.

As you can see the its pretty simple to capture the speed of Cal Crutchlow, Maverick Vinalez and Pol Espargaro as the get on the power to head down towards the amazing Maggotts and Beckets section of the circuit.

The circuit was in amazing condition with the new surface and the bikes were handling it remarkably well and topping the time sheets on the Petronas Yamaha SRT was Fabio Quarteraro going under the lap record in the first session of the day.

After a long session it was time to cool off from the heat in the media centre and get some images sorted for my publications, No time to really rest i grabbed a monster energy drink and got on a photographer shuttle down to the Silverstone wing for FP2 which was amazing to have the whole place to myself and a deserted pit lane to walk round. Session starting i realised that i club corner was a fast loud and close place to capture these guys at full speed and lean, As the images below show its just mind blowing the angles some of the bikes get to on the Silverstone tarmac.

Stunning place to shoot Moto Gp bikes with huge variation in the area from low grass to fast pace with high lean angle. By the end of FP2 Fabio Quartararo once again topped the timing sheets with another incredible lap time. Not what anyone was expecting from the beginning of the weekend to see the Satellite team topping the timing sheets.

That brought day 1 to a close and what a way to end the day which for me had begun at 3:30am and by the time i was at my hotel it was 8pm so a very long day and it was worth every minute.

DAY 2 - QUALIFYING DAY

Waking up to a beautiful sunrise in the heart of the UK brought a huge smile to my face. i knew the day ahead was going to be amazing and i was not disappointed in any way. A stunning morning arriving at the circuit to a nice fresh coffee always makes me smile and FP3 was fast approaching, One of the best places to see the overall ability of a Moto GP bike is at the luffield complex opposite the BRDC building, The images are always spectacular and 2019 didn’t disappoint.

Things can get very arty at that part of the circuit and there was a close incident with Maverick Vinalez as he out braked himself and went straight into the gravel trap but keeping the bike on 2 wheels he managed to continue setting some really fast laptimes after the initial run off. Once again though it was that man Fabio Quartararo who topped the timing sheets and giving himself massive confidence as the all important FP4 and Qualifying approached.

After the morning sessions i opted to rest and have some lunch (VERY EXPENSIVE SILVERSTONE!!!!) a sandwich cost me over £5 not impressed. I was hungry and very warm with temps of around 29 degrees meant i needed a week earned monster energy drink to refuel for FP4 and Qualifying.

This is where things got interesting, FP4 was about to begin and i was informed by a source i could go into pitlane for practice sessions (I was Miss Informed) I decided Pitlane was where i wanted to go as i had never shot a session in the pits and to see the riders up close was a massive privilege but was a bit spoiled when i was approached by more than necessary security staff shepherding me out of the pit lane, All i needed was 1 guy to ask me to leave and i would have respected his choice, I told him i had been miss informed and i was leaving but to have 3 other guys follow me to the gate was a but intimidating if i am honest i have many years experience in the business and never have i had that happen. Anyway not to dampen my mood i went to grab a shuttle to where i wanted to go not to ruin FP4 with 20 minutes remaining before Qualifying, I asked the driver if he could take me in which he couldn’t as he was the media shuttle and not the Photographer shuttle (I KNOW RIGHT) I opted for the media room to cool off from the last 15 minutes and get ready for Qualifying which was fast approaching.

The build up to qualifying had started and excitement and electricity was growing i decided Pit entrance was my next place and this is one of theist places on the circuit, Its mega fast and pretty personal as the riders are on top of you every lap. Not a place for the faint of heart as its pretty intimidating when there staring into your eyes at over 150mph

For the first time of the weekend there was a change at the top of the timings, Marc Marques gets his 60th career pole position and Valentino Rossi gets himself back on the front row followed closely by Jack Miller on the Pramac Ducati which was a mega end to a very exciting qualifying session. The day ended with the press conference which is one of my favourite times of the weekend, To listen to the guys speak about there day is an amazing pleasure and even after 4 years of covering the event its still one of the best parts of the weekend.

DAY 3 - RACE DAY - SCORTCHING!!!!!!!

Waking up on raceday was a great feeling, Sunshine and some amazing racing ahead for the day. I got to the circuit nice and early and walked passed the crowds to get to the empty media centre by myself for some breakfast and a frack Lillys coffee :), I arrived before a few of the other guys i know ( Jacob Ebrey and Greg Toth) which is always good to have other guys there to have a chat and a laugh with.

The afternoon ticked passed and it was time, Out i went into 32 degrees of summer sun to shoot the Moto3 race which was excellent to watch, Unfortunately John McPhee ended his weekend in 7th place overall after a strong start sitting in third for a while but was just out paces by the guys around him by the end of the race.

Its 13:00 and ITS TIME, Standing infant of the #VR46 grandstand on turn 1 the GP has arrived on the grid and the crowd was like a football crown, Supporting cheering and whistling, BOOOOM!!! A flurry of sound and there off and it went manic from there. Alex Rins has a bobble into turn 1 causing Fabio Quartararo to check up causing him to high side and Dovizioso flys over the top of him in a horrific fiery accident.

The race would have been insane had these two guys not crashed out, There two of the most reliable guys on the Moto GP grid and it left a gap between Marques, Rins in first and second to Rossi in third (Eventually finishing 4th) but as your all aware the winner by 0.013 was Alex Rins in the Ecstar Team Suzuki which was a mind blowing end to a spectacular weekend.

To sum up my weekend i was incredibly humbled but the weekend, It was one of the best weekends i have had trackside and i met and spoke to some great guys over the weekend. The journey home was a great time to reflect and i am hoping to keep the momentum of this season going and grow CMC-Images bigger and hopefully it will be a move into a job opportunity for me.

Thank you for taking the time to read my Blog post and please follow my social media by clicking on the buttons below and liking my work, As a small growing business it really means the world to hear your nice comments and support for my work. Its what keeps me going and makes me want to get better with every event i attend. Until next event people, Bye for now :)

2019 BRITISH GP WINNER

#42 Alex Rins on the Ecstar Team Suzuki Moto GP

BSB Oulton Park

SHOOTING BSB WITH FUJI AT Oulton Park

For the 2019 season I have been looking to break into the Bennetts British Superbike Championship, Its a series I have followed closely for 19 years since the days of Chris Walker and Neil Hodgson in the epic battle to the championship final where the Ducati 998 came out on top as the ever reliable Suzuki GSXR 1000 blew its engine in the closing laps.

I have been shooting Knockhill rounds for the last 3 years and it’s been a superb paddock to be a part of and I had gained the experience to have the opportunity to shoot the Oulton Park round of the season.

Nothing better on a Bank Holiday weekend to get trackside with fast bikes and the amazing sights and sounds of the BSB, Sunday morning started a bit damp with FP3 and Qualifying ahead. I decided to head out to the final corner to capture some speed and get the thrill of bike racing up close and personal.

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This is one of my favourite images from the event looking deep into the eyes of Scott Redding on the BeWiser Ducati. The detail of the Fuji XT2 is incredible to capture the detail at such high speeds, It was a rush to have these amazing riders pass by so close to me and see right into their eyes as they put all their skills to the test on this fantastic circuit.

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Oulton Park is one of my favourite circuits in the country and from this event it will possibly be Josh Brookes favourite circuit as he completed the double victory on Race day.

Over all it was an excellent weekend with some spectacular action and good close racing, The next round will be at the amazing Donington Park in Derby. What will happen at the triple header weekend after such a dominating round not only for Josh Brookes but the BeWiser Ducati team. I for one am really excited to be heading to cover that event. More images from this event are available in the Gallery Pages.

One Full Year Shooting Fujifilm

One year ago I made a huge decision to change all my Canon equipment to Fuji series Mirrorless equipment, I sold up my reliable Canon 1Dmk3 and 1Dmk4 and the 70D I was using as a back up along with that I sold up the 300mm f2.8 L and the old classic 80-200 f2.8. it was a hard decision but there was no going back.

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In came the my new Fuji Xt2s and the 100-400 with the 50-140 f2.8 and some battery grips to complete the set up,

Having has some experience shooting with Fuji with the original X-Pro1 I felt right at home with the system and the menus which definitely helped when it came to setting up the shooting style I was looking for.

My main subject is Motorsport which everyone following my social media is well aware of, I have been using the XT2 for the full of 2018 season at some of the UKs larger motorsport events, I covered the MSA British Touring Car Championship, Bennetts British Superbike Championship The Annual Silverstone Classic and the FIA World Endurance Championship. Some of the image examples below.

As you can see from the examples above the Fuji system is more than capable of producing some of the most impressive image quality among the big hitters, Now I am well aware its not the camera taking the shot its the operator who has the eye for the shot but the kit helps the operator to perform better.

When shooting the Silverstone classic I was luck enough to run into Carl Hare of Fujifilm who was willing to let me run off with his Fuji XH1 which was the bigger new addition to the Fuji family at that time, (XT3 Now Launched)

Again I was amazed by the performance of this amazing piece of kit the way it performed was seamless and with the 100-400 it was simply outstanding. Never missing a moment of the action.

Now the Motorsport season has come to an end for me in 2018 I have started to develop one of my XT2 cameras into a Landscape camera using it to shoot travel photography in Budapest to shooting my local area in the Scottish Borders,

I recently bought the 23mm f2 lens for travel and the 16-55 f2.8 for Landscape over the next few months. Image examples below

So what I am trying to say is after making the big choice to jump to a new system for me has been a happy successful decision, The image quality is outstanding but the cameras themselves are just great fun to shoot with, They bring a new enjoyment to shooting what ever scene you are looking for. The EVF is so helpful to capture the perfect exposure and composition with the X-Trans sensor producing some of the best colour rendering I have seen from a digital camera system.

Once again thanks everyone for the Continued support and hopefully there will be more opportunities in 2019. I have started doing some Static shooting my work place in the Scottish Borders Shooting for Jaguar / Land Rover. It’s amazing to work with a superb brand. I look forward to seeing some of you in 2019 and once again please follow my social media links on the page to keep up with all the goings on around cmc-images.

FUJI - WEC/ELMS At Silverstone

I am going to start with saying WHAT A WEEKEND!!! Absolutely brilliant. Loved every minute of it, Even when I was moaning about all the walking lol. Yes I am human and walking long ways was getting to me.

Anyway, What a weekend, Its my annual trek to Silverstone for the FIA World Endurance Championship and European Le Mans Series, Its always one of my headline weekends and a must visit for all motorsport fans, Especially to see the amazing machinery that takes part in this brilliant event.

 Arriving down mid morning on Friday I unfortunately missed the morning AM brief but not to worry it gave me time to relax and prepare for the afternoon action, After FIA Media rep Jeff Carter Fuji Ambassador ( https://tinyurl.com/JcarterMaclean) finished with our safety brief it was time to break out the amazing XT-2 and get off out there to shoot some of the afternoon action.

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Once again it was great to hear the roar of raw engines sounding like they should. It was all go from there with ELMS/WEC action to keep me entertained for the remainder of the day. First up I must say, To see the Toyota Gazoo Racing (https://twitter.com/Toyota_Hybrid) going through the Maggots/Becketts section at Silverstone will blow your mind. Throughout the practice sessions the most entertaining track action was from the sounds of the Factory Porsche cars in fact all of the porches through the weekend sounded spectacular, Once again the Chip Ganassi Racing Ford GT cars looked beautiful and its a pleasure to see these amazing cars driven so well.

With some amazing action during the sessions it was time to head back to the media room and sort out the images and as you can see I hog the desks a bit, I do like my space :)

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Images downloaded onto the SSD it was time to get the editorial work started and sent away, I did have my very yummy sandwich to keep me occupied while I did the boring work HAHA.

Now its not often when I am around a circuit I will approach people as I like to keep a low profile get in and shoot and get out, I made an exception on Saturday and am I happy I did, I met with some guys from FujiFilm UK ( Carl - https://twitter.com/Carl_Hare) and I got the amazing opportunity to get my hands on the amazing all new Fuji XH-1 for the start of the ELMS Race. 

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I was a happy boy as I walked away with this amazing piece of kit to shoot the start of the race. What an epic piece of kit it is, The EVF is a game changer, So clear and bright and so much bigger than the XT2, The shutter button is very responsive and will snap at the slightest of press.

The over all burning question I asked myself was, Could this replace my XT2 for the £££ well.... No if I am honest, Yes, The EVF is spectacular, Yes the grip is much more comfortable to hold over the slim XT2 but there is something charming about the size of the XT2 and with it basically being an XT2 on a fat gain who enjoys shooting video then I am happy to stick with what I have. 

I am in no way putting the XH1 down, I loved it and I loved the opportunity to shoot with it but I will wait for the XT-3 before I see about upgrading, 

P.S - John Rourke (https://twitter.com/AdrenalMedia) had the Fuji 200mm f2 all weekend and I didn't manage to get my hands on that, One day I will get the shot to see how that will stack up but until then I am happy with my set up.

All in all a brilliant weekend again with some amazing racing and great people, It would be a dream come true to be able to work in this environment as a full time job opportunity, I have proven my skill level, I just need the opportunity to come my way. Thank you to everyone who supports me and my pages I am grateful for every like and share. Be sure to stick around there is plenty more to come and I will not disappoint.

WEC Gallery - https://tinyurl.com/wecelmscmcimages

 

First Bike Meeting with XT2

This season has been a great learning curve so far with the amazing Fuji XT2, Having been so used to Canon it was time to change and make photography interesting again. Shooting the annual visit of the British Superbike Championship at Knockhill with Fuji XT2 had brought some new learning experiences.

 Shooting bikes is very different from shooting cars, It requires a different technique and the approach to shooting bikes to to capture action and pin sharp images. My Fuji lenses on my XT2 bodies are the amazing 100-400 which is an unreal lens and produces some of the most stunning images I have seen. Examples below of how good this epic lens shoots.

I am sure you will agree this is one spectacular lens with the detail and depth of field for such a large apature of 4.5-5.6 is stunning. It is by far my favourite lens to shoot with and its light enough to shoot hand held.

 The other lens I shoot with is the 50-140 f2.8, This lens is mind blowing how sharp it can be, The design and weight it is perfect to keep on your camera at all times. Panning shots with this lens are made simple with the small size, Doing some research into shooting bikes Pan shooting a technique that is less used than when shooting the car side of Motorsport but even that I like to get some panning shots in there just to show the ability of this outstanding equipment. Below are some examples from the 40-150.

 

Shooting the BSB is one of the highlights events of my season, Its always great to be in the paddock with these guys and the amazing talent and bravery and to shoot them with this amazing kit to capture the spectacular things they can do on a bike is brilliant.

  One again I am blown away with the kit and hopefully you enjoy the images I have put up. Again if your looking for any more information on the Fuji kit please ask. 

 Next up for me this weekend is the annual Silverstone Classic, Again a new test of the kit with the challenges of Silverstone are always interesting. I will share my views and news after the event. Keep up with my images on Facebook , CMC-Images and Instagram, @cmcimages.

Thanks for reading. 

Shooting Motorsport with Fuji XT2

I have recently upgraded my camera equipment from a seasoned Canon Shooter for many years to a better (In my opinion) system, it was a tough decision over winter to make the decision but when I decided to sell all of my Canon equipment including my pride of  joy the Canon300mm f2.8, I decided to move to the Fuji XT2 system it was a huge step into the unknown for me.

 

  My decision was confirmed for two reasons, One - weight is a massive thing for me, The kit is incredible how light it is over the Canon equipment especially the 300mm f2.8 I was carrying round with me everywhere. I now have the same reach with 1/2 the weight and Two - The image quality is superb with fuji producing some of the best lenses I have ever used, Build quality and glass quality produces some of the sharpest image quality i have seen.

The image quality and detail shown in the image above shows the amazing clarity and dynamic range the fuji system has. 

The XT2 also shoots at an amazing 14fps meaning you will never miss that vital shot. There is one major bonus with the XT2 and that is dual memory SD card slots and with 2x San Disk 64GB Extreme cards the buffering is non existent and an eternal 128GB in both cameras.

One thing I love and its one step above the rest is the EVF (Electronic View Finder), What a difference it makes shooting especially when a group shot passes through the frame.

Setting the focus delay in the menu the camera will continue to track the selected focal point and won't jump to the passing car creating the arty scene above, The EVF works inside like a mini HD TV and gives an instant preview of what the image will look like, It will take some time for anyone looking to make the change from Canon or Nikon to get used to the new set up but once you know the system its second nature.

 I am not by any means telling anyone to run out and swap over your systems, I am simply putting an opinion out there. I have known people who haven't gotten on with the Fuji system and realised the mistake they made in changing. I have still to experience it shooting Bike racing and also at various circuits such as Silverstone but so far Donington, Knockhill and Croft have been successful for me and I will get the opportunity later in the season.

I hope you have enjoyed reading my opinion on the Fuji XT2 and if you are ever looking for more information on the system or maybe looking to make the big change then visit my work page and see some of my images from other events this season.