Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Monday, April 30, 2012

Chute! Chute! Olympic View Road Race

What a day.

It takes a bit of psychological amping up to come to a race to take photos. Staring at pro cycling magazine photos while envisioning being published on the cover of Road or Rouleur works for me. Walla Walla was such a high, but I wonder at the reality of the high. Racing is like entering a fantasy world for a weekend. Where does that world stand in the reality of life? How much does it really matter? One thing is for sure, I love it.

Upon arriving on the scene for the Olympic View Road Race, I feel deflated when the Pro/1/2 lead car driver is not as eager as past driver's to get me in the prime spot for photos. He superfluously demonstrates how it would be uncomfortable for me to get my head out the window from the back seat of his two-door car. His lack of appreciation for a photographer in his car and Brad Ross's inquiry two days earlier of who I shoot for and my ill-received response being "for my web site" pokes at my psyche a bit. Last weekend I was a superstar, this weekend people are treating me like just another chick with a camera.

Resilience is my silent middle name.

After this race, people needed resiliency.

Officials all have character! Listening to them and watching the race from their point of view is an alternate realm within bike racing. Although capturing a race from the back side of the peloton is not my favorite vantage point, I remain optimistic and go for the ride in the official's car. Al, the P/1/2 official starts our experience together telling me how photographers in the pro races get priority above everyone else for position in a race. Ah, yes, I am merely a beginner. 

From the backseat of the official's car, I sit back to watch the race and set up for pictures when I can. My eye is on the mass of racers in front me. That's when I see one rider lose control and a domino effect of bikes crashing ripple through the peloton. First thought, stop the car. Second thought, do I know anyone in the crash. Third thought, take the picture. One day, my immediate response will be TAKE THE PICTURE. I have to trust others to do their job and just do mine. I feel a bit uncomfortable doing this; I feel compelled to get out and help. A crash is definite reality and helping is the right thing to do. But I need to toughen up and be a photographer. A picture says a thousand words and I want you to bear witness.

From what I hear, there were 7 or more crashes at this race, at least two calls to 911, many injuries, and thousands of dollars of damage to gear. Road conditions were good.

The crash photos are below. Photos of the race and a series of sprint finishes can be found at                    

1st Crash










2nd Obstacle/Crash




At the Finish Line









Thursday, April 26, 2012

ToWW4

Tour of Walla Walla Stage 4 Road Race
The Final 64 Miles







Sunday, April 22, 2012

Saturday, April 21, 2012

ToWW 2

 Tour Of Walla Walla Criterium





Don't let the arms fool you.






ToWW1


From the back of Duke's BMW motorcycle, we rambled from one end of the course to the next capturing moments of pain and aggression.  

The Tour of Walla Walla Road Race #1  

was the beginning of an exciting competition. Within the next hour is the downtown criterium and later today the time trial. Stay tuned for more glimpses into the races and the eventual photo report of the entire stage race in detail.