Jeffrey from the BARC very kindly invited us along to Oulton Park to see and practice some motorsport photography for some of the races.
It had been a few years since I photographed motorsport an event like this one so I jumped at the opportunity.
There was a full race card for the day and an amazing mix of races and classes from the
- CNC heads sports/saloon championship.
- Nippon challenge.
- Happy racer tricolour trophy.
- Deutsche marque cup races.
- BSA national championship open kart races.
- MR2 series.
- Carbon8 & active consultants coupe cup races.
- Armed forces challenge races.
There were some amazing photo opportunities although it took me a little while to get my eye in again. But I am very pleased with the photographs I have from the day.
Thank you to Jeffrey and all at the BARC for giving me the chance to photograph this amazing motorsport event and be at Oulton Park.
Motorsport Photography Gallery.
If you enjoyed this you might like to see my Motocross Photography post here>>.
I also go into how to photograph motorsports there with some very easy to follow tips to get fantastic images with very standard camera equipment.
Best Camera for Motorsport Photography.
I touch on this in my motocross photography article. In short, “Don’t chase gear”. Like everything practises and technique is what is most important.
There will always be somebody claiming that they know the best lens for motorsport photography or that Canon or Nikon or some other brand is better because of x,y,z. The camera you have in your hand is always the best one to use and in the right hands, any camera can take amazing images.
That said good photography equipment helps as long as you have the basics mastered. The best camera in the world can not fix bad techniques or make up for lack of practice.
Keep it simple.
A lot of the time I use an old Canon 40D with an inexpensive Sigma 18-250 lens and I get great results. Plus it’s a very versatile set up so I can use it for really wide shots and instantly zoom in to 250mm. If I want to shoot burst it will shoot a pretty impressive 7fps quite reliably.
As always there is no one tool for every job. You need to consider the type of motorsport images you want to get. How close or far from the action you will be. Are you taking pictures in the pits of the crews in action? Or do you want to get images of the cars speeding past? Do you want to show the vehicles battling for position?
My Guide to Motorsport Photography
I knew I would be taking pictures in many different environments. I didn’t want to be weighed down with lots of gear so I opted for the setup I am most familiar with for my wedding photography.
I loaded up with a 5D coupled with my 24-70 f2.8. This is such a versatile setup for wider images. The fast glass and wide-angle are fantastic for walking around the pits. The 24mm was ideal standing trackside and getting those images showing the cars flying past at speed.
My second camera set up was a 70-200 f2.8 on a crop sensor body. I like the crop sensor bodies for two main reasons. Firstly you get pretty good frames per second if you are photographing motorsport action. Secondly, the crop (kind off and don’t jump in here correcting me) gives you a magnification of 1.6 in the case of Canon. So the 200mm of my lens is effectively 320mm giving me quite a good reach.
If you want to learn more about some of the techniques take a look at my motocross photography post here>>
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