Posted by Claire Wade
I bought my husband, Glyn, a driving experience for his birthday via Buyagift, so after many months, he redeemed the voucher and booked in at Stafford. The two cars he chose to drive were a Ferrari and a Lamborghini and he got to do four laps in each.
There was an option to pay extra for photographs; I have no idea of the quality, but it did look like there were only one or two photographers and sometimes around 10 vehicles on the track. I decided to try and take some photos myself although I don’t have much experience of shooting speeding cars.
I had no idea how close I would get to the track and as Glyn would not be using his camera, I attached both his and mine to my dual camera strap (as bought for me by my Dad on my last birthday) and had my 70-300mm lens on my camera and the standard kit lens on Glyn’s camera. It turned out that I used the 70-300mm lens more.
Being Winter and around 8.30am, the sun was low and blinding. Spectators were only allowed at one end of the track and unfortunately, this area was the opposite to the rising sun which made it very difficult to see, let alone take good photos!
There was a curve in the track on which I managed to take photos away from the sun, but other images look a bit sepia because of the strong contrasts. When Glyn was parked and taking instruction, I was able to get some nice shots of him as the sun was out of the way there.
Away from the sun, it being early, it was rather dark, so I was on an ISO of at least 400, sometimes 800. I wanted a fairly fast shutter speed, but didn’t want to up my ISO too much, so I was usually at 1/200.
I shot in raw, mainly because I always do, but also it gave me more power to bring the cars out of the shadows without losing too much detail in the sky as the contrast in light was strong.
The track wasn’t huge, so the fastest Glyn got up to was 90 mph, and he did overtake quite a few of the others! At one point he had a trail of smoke coming from his Lamborghini that left spectators around me exclaiming, but I thought it was great as it added to my photos!