I was lucky enough to be able to attend the 2010 Indy 500 via work this past weekend and I have to say I had a fantastic time. I am so impressed by Indianapolis Motor Speedway, and this is after visiting quite a few other race tracks and racing events. I can see that Indy is probably quite a difficult race track to shoot. There’s really nowhere good for professional photographers that allows them to get any kind of shots a fan wouldn’t be able to get themselves. So, attending as what I’ll call “Fan Plus” (I had a pass which allowed me access to the media building on the front straight), I felt quite privileged to be able to see the pitlane, the start/finish line and if I looked behind me from the position I spent most of the race – was also able to see turn two and most of the backstretch.
I couldn’t quite believe how fast the race seemed to pass when I was there… Time flies when you’re having fun!
The huge majority of the photos I took I used a fast shutter speed. This was out of fear of leaving the event with no photos to show for it. So I set the camera to shutter priority mode and cranked it as fast as it would go. I still had to pan with the cars to get a sharp image, but I am happy to see that most of the photos I took that were in focus (out of focus shots have not been uploaded), were sharp.
I did, during the middle of the race, try fully manual and managed to get the shots below, which were taken at a slower shutter speed where the background is blurry and the speed these cars were going is much more apparent.Most of the photos are like the one below, taken with a very fast shutter speed.
Anyway, I uploaded a gallery of all the 477 photos (there were more, but some I let the focus ring slip and they were blurry) I took over the weekend and you can view the full gallery here.
Tim is British and lives in the United States with his wife and kids.
He works for software developers Image Space Inc. and Studio 397 on their racing simulations, and is a fan of Gaming, Motorsports, and photography.