24Hr Racing. It has it all. Solo riders who must be crazy, teams who are only slightly less so and then the newest category 6+6. Some would say these guys are either geniuses or they have not been struck by the 24Hr MTB race bug. Either way any chance I get to go shoot a 24Hr event, I cannot wait. Night photography, sunset and sunrise for beautiful light and harsh midday sun which pushes you to be creative shooting during the “bad light”
So last weekend when the skies flashed their own lights at us, the thunder soon followed after and then the rains had a go. I thought “No not this weekend” as I sat in the back of my Subaru Outback eating my dinner. This would not beat me. I got the rain gear out and prepared to look the storm that was hitting the east coast of NSW straight in the face. Thankfully, the storm subsided and cities north and south took the brunt, little Awaba MTB park would be spared.
Now I know Awaba well but there are so many twists and turns at this great course but only so many events I get to photograph here, I knew I wanted to get to some less frequented sections to refresh my image archives with some new dirt frames.
I will admit the light was not great, thick grey cloud in a rain forest on an eastern facing slope at sunset…. well you can imagine. So flash work it was and before long the only option was to do long exposures but I always intended to do this. I was up at Awaba a month ago with Apollo rider Grant Webster shooting some images for his new light sponsor Nitelights. This is such a fun type of photography especially how the riding lights create such interesting streaks of light and light up the riding trail.
One of the best parts about 24Hr is how I get to chat with the riders I know well. I can see them go thru so many stages of energy.. or the lack of. I try to let them know I am waiting for them as they approach calling out and giving them a cheer. Awaba can be a tough course for both photography and the riders but I would not have asked for anything different as each opportunity regardless of weather conditions produces new work.