Not long ago I was sitting in a rental car cruising through the French countryside when I spotted a sign adorned with ‘LeMans’. I was initially en route to another destination, but how could a petrol head like myself resist stopping in at a place as famous as the Circuit de la Sarthe!?
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As a photographer I feel it is important to be able to keep things fresh. After shooting cars for a number of years there are times where I become so bored shooting another generic car consisting of a blister kit, wing, hippari stretch tyres and a set of aftermarket gauges. I realised last year that the key to not hitting photographers block is to make sure I change things up every once in a while so recently I indulged in some Grand Prix Hydroplane racing.
As I write this, the 2018 WRC season has just kicked off in Monaco, with drivers leaving service it is time to switch on the anti-lag, and bolt on the lightpods. As it is a weekend of rallying, it seems only right to keep the blog on a rallying theme too!
In 1999 I remember coming across a photo of a yellow and black Nissan in Japan that ran under a series known as JGTC. Ever since that moment it was love at first sight. This car has adorned my computer desktop, I have built models of it, driven it in Gran Turismo lap after lap and it just seems to have been the one car that I have never forgotten. It was one of the first Japanese competition machines I ever stumbled across, so not long ago I decided to track it down and do something I never thought as a 15-year old I would have the chance to do – come face to face with it.
I have always been much more interested in taking photos, rather than writing and blogging. Although this year I have decided to be more active in actually doing something with the photos I take, not just jamming them onto a hard drive and forgetting about them.
Twenty seventeen has been an odd, but unusually satisfying year behind the lens for me. It has been the first time in a long that that I haven’t set foot in Japan at all, and I thought this would be weirder than it actually was. Most of you know me for my heavily Japanese orientated content, and the prospect of predominantly shooting non-Japanese subjects scared me a little. I jumped out of my comfort zone a bit, and enjoyed the new subjects that I found in front of me.
Now it is time to sum up the year that was, and I have taken nine shoots or events to showcase this year. Some crazier than others, but all were such an awesome experience to capture. Continue reading »
“This car reacts faster than I can think; it is impossible to keep up with it!” These were the words that Timo Salonen uttered to waiting media when he pulled his Peugeot 205T16 into time control in Finland 1986. As the beads of sweat on his face glistened under the setting Finnish sun, he pulled out a cigarette, lit up, and surveyed the time-control board. A trail of smoke crept out through the perspex side window of the angrily rumbling Peugeot as he engaged first gear and idled off to the next stage.
*This article was originally produced for Classic Ford, a UK-based magazine*
Click on photos to view large versions.
Plenty of race cars come and go, but a special few manage to etch themselves deep into our memory banks. Unfortunately, so many of these special breed of race cars share one thing in common – and this story is no different. They often disappear as fast as they lap the tarmac once they are retired. While Gary Wilkinson was in Johor Malaysia, he caught word that there was an Escort in a workshop that he might want to have a look at. As a passionate Ford man, Gary needed to know more.
It might be pint-sized, it might not be an obvious choice, but believe it or not this micro-machine packs more punch than it lets on. Yes it is a Suzuki Swift, which is perfect for grabbing groceries, pottering off to the garden centre in, or picking up granny on a Sunday afternoon. This particular example though, would for sure give granny a full-blown heart attack.
A while back I did a spotlight post on a very special boat that is circulating around ponds here in New Zealand, although this one breaks the mold. Jet sprinting originated in NZ, and is dominated by V8-powered boats. So when Peter Huijs showed up back in the day with boat that sounded slightly different, we all sat up and took notice.
Jetsprinting in a nutshell, is a jetboat with a crew consisting of a driver and a navigator racing against the clock through a twisting series of channels in 70-100cm of water. Each run usually takes around 55 seconds, and consists of 25-30 changes in direction, and as far as spectator sports go this one is hard to top!
Click on photos for larger version