Monday, August 4, 2008

Fine Track - Tough Place to Shoot

The Motorsport Club of Ottawa held the Ted Powell Memorial race meeting at Calabogie Motorsports Park on 26 and 27 July. Of course, there would be no show without yours truly being in attendance. And so I drove up with a friend on the Saturday for a long day's shooting.

Calabogie is an odd place in that it's still a work in progress. Nonetheless, with imagination good shots are possible.

(Click images to see full 800px wide version)

It was a fun, but long and tiring, day. Great weather, great racing.

The other big development has been my switching to the dark side. No not from Nikon to Canon, but even worse - from PC to Mac!

I'm still navigating my way through the step learning curve, particularly of the Aperture program. Haven't quite got the hang of how to keep images sharp when resizing for the web. But I think I did okay with this one.

Now back to learning about Aperture. Oh and as usual the rest of the images are at

Take care until next time.


Friday, July 25, 2008

Superbikes at Mosport

The Parts Canada Superbike Championship series came to Mosport on the 19th and 20th of July, providing great racing amid a mix of weather.

It got very wet at one stage on the Sunday :

(Click images to see full 800px wide version)

And here's what happens when you switch cameras at the wrong time - leader of the race bins it:

Gigi Lesieur, winner of the Honda Pro Oils Women's Cup race:

Very tight racing with numerous lead changes in Sunday's Superbike race (I think all 4 of the riders in this image led at some stage):

Rest of the images are at

This weekend it's off to Calabogie for the MCO Ted Powell meeting.


Monday, July 7, 2008

Only 2 Races!?

For the 29th of June, I trouped up to the beautiful Mont Tremblant/St Jovite area of Quebec for the Sommet des Legendes meeting at Le Circuit. Unfortunately, cancellation of the vintage racing component of this meeting meant that there were only two races on the program - the Cooper Tires Presents The Formula Atlantic Championship Powered by Mazda and a Mt Tremblant Challenge for sports cars.

I'm just glad I knew this before leaving and that I only went up for the Sunday! Otherwise, I might have been a tad upset at having made the journey for such a limited format. However, I must say that the racing in the Formula Atlantics definitely made the trip worthwhile. Besides, they're such groovy little cars.

(Click images to see full 800px wide version)

Race Results:
1. Junior Strous
2. Markus Niemela
3. Carl Skerlong

Race winner, Junior Strous:

As for the Mont Tremblant circuit, it's one of those that unfortunately has become badly disfigured with chainlink fencing everywhere. Hell to shoot at, but still managed to find some nice spots. However, there were almost no crowds present and it was a beautiful, just beautiful day, so I had fun. More pictures at


Saturday, June 28, 2008

Father's Day at Mosport

Mosport held the "Father's Day Double Header" meeting from 14-15 June. In truth, it was more like a quadruple header with the Canadian Tire NASCAR series running the Dickies 200 miler, Grand Am Koni Challenge racing for 2.5 hours on Saturday, the Mustang Challenge series visiting from the US to race on the Sunday and the Castrol Canadian Touring Car Championships racing on both Saturday and Sunday. The Skip Barber series also skipped (feel free to groan) across the border to race. The Ontario Formula Ford Championship didn't want to feel left out, so they also held a round.

Grand Am Koni Challenge

The Koni Challenge race on produced some good professional racing with some beautifully turned out cars, including a nice nod to a dad.

(Click images to see full 800px wide version)

Results for the Grand Sport class (and the overall positions) were:
1. Foster / Maxwell - Hyper Sport / Ford Mustang GT
2 Canney / Plumb - Rehagen Racing / Ford Mustang GT
3 Johnson / Milner - Motorsport Technology Group / BMW Z4 M

While the Street Tuner class results were:
1 Curran / Holtom - Georgian Bay Motorsports / Chevrolet Cobalt SS (pictured above)
2 Hemmingson / Skavnes - ICY/ Phoenix Racing / Subaru Legacy 81 1:34.786 77 79.993 Subaru of America
3 Beede / Plumb - Bill Fenton Motorsports / Honda Civic SI

Mustang Challenge for the Miller Cup

The latter part of the Mustang Challenge (aka Miller Cup) race was marred by a crash that left a lot of fluid on the track. This led to a lot of quick dry being spread about and when, after a long safety car period racing resumed the result was:

The racing came to a halt after about two laps through that. However, I should add that the racing prior to that had been terrific, that this was I believe their first crash of the weekend, and that the race was very probably scheduled to end about then anyway. It's an interesting spec series and not the worst I've seen. You can find out more about the series at the Miller Cup website.

1. Andrew Caddell - TC Motorsports
2. Pratt Cole - RP Motorsports
3. Tony Buffomante - Team BRE

Canadian Tire NASCAR Series

A storm built up during the Canadian Tire Nascar Series, Dickies 200 race on the Sunday:

But, they ran in the rain, admittedly with a certain amount of difficulty:

Race results:
1. J.R. Fitzpatrick - Fitzpatrick Motorsports Chevrolet
2. D.J. Kennington - Castrol/NPP Dodge
3. Don Thomson, Jr. - Home Hardware Chevrolet

Complete results are here.

Castrol Canadian Touring Car Championship

While the Castrol Canadian Touring Car Championship ran races on both days:

Although Nicholas Krikorian may have watched the Mustang race and thought rallying his Subaru was a fine idea:

Sunday's race results:
Super Touring
1. Nigel Krikorian - Subaru
2. Kuno Wittmer - Honda
3. Etienne Borgeat - BMW

1. Andre Rapone - Acura
2. Christian Raymond - Mazda
3. Eric Leblanc - Mazda

Full results are here for Saturday's race and here for Sunday.

It was a weekend of great racing in perfect surroundings! The complete set of images can be seen at


Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Shannonville - The Day that almost Rained

Firstly, I should start off by saying that in my last blog, I might have sounded more negative about the Calabogie track and its facilities than intended. The track is a great track, but it is comparatively new and clearly a work-in-progress. Done correctly, it has the potential to become a superb facility.

Now, with that out of the way (Is that some kind of record? one blog, one mea culpa), the following week we went to the Sunday racing of the two day Shannonville Shootout meeting at the flat, twisty Shannonville Motorsports Park. Saturday's racing had been cut short by a deluge and a big accident during the first race of the round for the Castrol Canadian Touring Car Championship. Sunday shaped up as looking like it was going to rain most of the day, but surprisingly it held off all day, until the drive home.

With the first race of the touring cars not having been completed on Saturday, Sunday commenced with finishing that race. I spoke to interim leader, Nigel Krikorian, on the pregrid. Nigel desperately wanted more rain, "They'll eat me up if it doesn't rain!" However, maybe it was the still slightly damp track that worked in his favour, but Nigel and his Subaru STI held off the opposition for a fine win. He was not so lucky in the second race later on Sunday afternoon where an off meant he finished second.

Other classes also raced through the day, including the GT Sprint with the Corvette and Viper monsters. Formula 1200 and Formula 1600 also staged fine races. However, it must be said that one of the most interesting and exciting races came in the Group 70 class with the dicing for second and third between Del Bruce in his Porsche and Diane Dale in her 240Z. A fine struggle that lasted to the very end of the race.

All in all a great day's racing. The rest of the pictures can be seen at

The following week was the Montreal GP where I put the camera away - one catch fence I can deal, but two; no way. Next report will be for the NASCAR Canadian Tire, Koni Grand Am Challenge, Castrol Canadian Touring Car Championship races at Mosport over the Father's Day weekend.


Thursday, May 29, 2008

And Awaaayyyyy We Go...

Was planning on going to Calabogie for the Canadian Superbikes both Saturday and Sunday, but unfortunately I got the world's worst headcold. Managed to make it Saturday, but felt like death warmed up by the time I got home so had to bail on going Sunday. As they say in the classics, Bugger!

So after shooting on Saturday and being too sick to attend the racing on Sunday, I decided to try this blogging thing out.

Anyway, while the track itself looks very nice, there is almost no access for spectators. Originally, it was built as a trackday track and there's basically no facilities whatsoever for spectators. All you can see is about 4 corners from this monstrously high berm designed to reduce neighbourhood noise complaints. Means it is very, very difficult to get any variation in shots.

The images are now processed and can be seen in all their glory, or otherwise, here (clicky) I have to say that I'm reasonably pleased with the way they turned out. Here's another one, just for the fun of it:

My aim this summer is to shoot as much sport, particularly car and bike racing, as the day job allows.