Formula D: Streets of Long Beach

I had the opportunity to go out to the Formula D event in Long Beach this past weekend. What made this event cool was that it was run on a portion of the same course used for the Long Beach Grand Prix. What kind of sucked though was that the course was pretty short and slow (about 60-65mph max). It was also tough to find a good spot for pictures.. well, for “still” pictures, there are plenty of spots.. but I really like the panning shots, so it was had to find a spot where the cars were even going at a decent speed and have enough space to click off some panning shots.. I was armed with the usual arsenal.. one Canon 20D with a 70-200 f/2.8L IS USM and another Canon 20D with a 16-35 f/2.8L.. after about 10 minutes, I realized a good focal length to have at the track was in the 50mm range.. hahah.. oh well, maybe next time.. my friend James went with me.. he was packin’ a Nikon D200 with 70-200 f/2.8 VR and a Nikon D70 with 18-70 something.. the Nikon D200 was actually DSport Mike’s.. for the record, James said (1) the D200 made his D70 feel like a toy and (2) he loves the screen.. combined, we shot about 8.5 GB worth of pictures, which I handed over to Mike today.. hopefully we got some decent shots.. a few notable things about this past weekend’s events and realizations:

    1. Hulk Hogan was there with his son.. his son is building a drift car now and said he should be ready for competition around July-August.. Hulk said that drifting is cool and that it will be bigger than NASCAR 🙄

    2. Some chick from American Idol was there to sing the national anthem.. they said she’s from season 3.. I dont think I watched season 3.. I didnt think she sang all that great, but the sound system sucked also.. one things for sure, she was short..

    3. Steph Papadakis destroyed his Honda S2000.. I saw him smash the rear bumper.. I think on his next pass, he smashed the front bumper.. luckily he didnt qualify because his car looked pretty damn bad after that..

    4. The Canon 1D MkIIN is one bad ass camera.. I saw some dude messing with the 8.5fps continuous shooting.. the sound was sweet..

    5. 98% of everyone shooting pictures at the event was shooting Canon.. 99% of them had L-glass..

    6. Being a photographer at an event is rough.. standing, fighting for positition, starving while you’re shooting pictures.. the list goes on..

    7. Formula D issued “All Access” badges/passes.. D1 gives/loans you a Caltrans orange vest.. I like the vest.. people move out of the way for people wearing Caltrans orange vests..

    8. Drifting really is fun to watch..

    9. I love the Canon 70-200 f/2.8L IS USM lens.. I’m definitely going to have to get myself one of those (been using Dynamic Ed’s.. I think I’ve used his lens more than he has himself)

    10. The older I get, the more I hate the loud music at the events in the vendor area..

I’ll post some pics later.. I havent gone through all of them yet.. lots of them are crap, as is expected when I’m shooting.. but I think I got a few pretty good ones.. resized and post-processed for the internet, they’ll look pretty good at least..

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