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Full speed ahead - X3 magazine

Last Sunday I had an assignment from Audi to shoot at the Formula Student Germany on the legendary Hockenheimring. As usual I packed my Nikon gear for this kind of work but tossed the Sigma dp2 quattro in the bag, hoping to have a moment or two to shoot some action with it.

And that moment came. In the early heats there were no Audi sponsored cars going around (they were doing so well that they started in later heats) so I could do a little experimenting. I’m not particularly experienced in panning but that was exactly what I wanted try. After a little experimenting I found a good way to do it, using shutter speed priority and continuos drive mode. I used manual focus on a spot the track where I wanted to catch them. With the focus peaking this was incredibly easy. Using the screen in such bright conditions was pretty hard though, it is a tad too reflective for my taste.

I didn’t have too much time so I could not perfect my technique but was nevertheless quite happy with the results. Of course this is not what this camera is made for but it gave me satisfying results. The continuous mode is fast enough to get to the end of the buffer on one panning movement. I had some time between the cars so I could shoot pretty much without thinking about the buffer. Reviewing is a problem though. As you have to wait for the complete buffer to clear before you can review your shots. This made it hard to adjust during shooting.

I would not trade my Nikon gear for the dp2 quattro for this kind of work of course but it was fun trying this. The camera as a whole feels much more polished and up-to-date than the previous generations. It’s no allrounder but much more versatile than ever before.

 

  • Bill Taylor

    That brings back memories, Bob. I saw a few races at Hockenheim in 1971-1973; likely before you were born!! At that time I was shooting with a Minolta SRT101 with High Speed Ektrachrome pushed to ISO 160! How things have changed. I did get some good shots, though, especially between the Sachskurve and the Agip Kurve where they are slowed down turning. Thanks for sharing your experiment. BT

    • Bob van Ooik (author)

      I wish that were true… I’m from ’71 😉

  • ritterrunkel

    But I wasn’t born at that time. =P Nice pictures! I always like your writings and your stylisch website, too – it’s got a nice bright look and feel! I have to admire these little racing cars … they look like a high tech go-cart from modern times. Well they are, but they look incredible compact and bullish without front and rear spoiler … never seen em like this, only the little ones looking like small but complete F1 cars (e.g. F3). Really would like to battle against some friends in one of these … Well I guess I’m getting off topic on your photo website … 😀

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