Today I shall relay to you the tale of how I viciously defeated – by way of all my awesomeness – a 14 years old girl; how I mercilessly showed her who the better man was (couldn’t really fail on that one, could I?)
I am talking, of course, of the noble sport of go kart. Now, some of you who have been following this blog for a while might remember this post and consequently think that I’m in to racing. You would, however, be sorely mistaken. Sure, I’ve played my fair share of racing games and accidentally watched some formula 1 or other forms of racing on the TV, but I’ve never been very interested and I don’t even have a driver’s license. The fastest thing I’ve driven is a bicycle, unless you’re counting jumping out of an airplane as driving something. Why am I telling you this? So you can better appreciate the magnitude of my victory of course.
You see, I was going up against the family champion, my sister in law, apparently she always wins, even against my father in law – so I was feeling the pressure before we started; she had the advantage of home arena, she knew the track, she had done this before. I, on the other hand, had never driven a go kart and really had no idea what I was getting myself in to. It didn’t start very well either, shortly after the engine was started I managed to kill it, leaving me stranded on the track until someone came and restarted it for me. After that things went a little better and I managed to get to the starting line with some jerky driving, mostly avoiding running in to the tyre barriers.
There I was, lined up at the starting line in pole position (possibly because my opponent thought I needed the handicap), focusing on the red light in front of me, waiting for it to turn green, when I heard someone say go, hesitantly pressed the gas pedal a bit and shortly saw my rival zooming past me. At that point I realized the lights might not be working as intended and decided to press the gas a bit firmer. I was already behind but now I was quickly picking up speed and I took the corners as fast as I dared. By the time we got to the final stretch of the first lap I had almost caught up and I lined myself up to pass the leader in the next curve. It worked, I went on the inside fast and braked my way past. After that it was actually a pretty easy race; I was getting more comfortable and I had found a good line through the fastest part of the track which allowed me to pretty much keep the pedal to the metal. In the trickier corners my tyres were screeching on occasion, something I’m not convinced is entirely good, but by the end of the race I was getting the hang of it and ended up almost an entire lap ahead of the old champion.
So that’s the riveting retelling of the race, kept you at the edge of your seat, didn’t it? But this is a photography blog so after that little indulgence I guess we should discuss the photos as well. The second one was taken from the spectator side and the first one from the side of the track (it was the first time I got a chance to use my macro lens as a short tele). I underexposed the ambient a bit so it wasn’t quite as dark as the pictures make out but the sun was pretty much gone by the end. I put a LP160 on the railing of the spectator seats and triggered it as optical slave with the popup flash. Since it was getting dark there were no problems for the LP160 to pick up the popup flash, which left me free to move around a bit. I needed some test shots to get the aim right – it would have been easier with a proper stand so could have had more freedom to angle it like I wanted to. Once I got that nailed down I just had to wait for the drivers to come around to the right corner and shoot them.
I think the shots turned out pretty well, especially after the editing, which added some nice tones to it. In particular I think the first shot is nice, I like the timing with the finishing flag in the background. Neither of the subjects in these shots is the one I faced off against and I can see why she was the champion and they weren’t; they were kind of slow, no tyre screeching at all, very disappointing. I was mostly concerned with the shooting since I immediately got the idea for the shots when I heard we were going to a go kart track, but I have to admit that the driving was pretty entertaining as well. Maybe next time we go there we’ll have a rematch.
Until next time, drive safe.