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Old May 8th, 2011, 10:35 PM   #1
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Any race videographers onboard?

Started toe-dipping into a new venture - shooting small-scale motorsports events (so far, only mud bogs, probably start some drag and dirt track racing soon) and selling DVD's after the event (with discounted pre-orders onsite). Looks like there may well be a market for it.

Anybody working in a similar circuit?
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Old May 9th, 2011, 07:30 AM   #2
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Re: Any race videographers onboard?

I'm thinking about it. I shoot other sports. There are some race tracks close by. I'd like to hear what others have to say about it.

Someone also mentioned car shows in the area.
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Old May 10th, 2011, 08:36 AM   #3
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Re: Any race videographers onboard?

I worked for several years shooting for AMA events -- Pro Motocross, Pro ATV MX, and GNCC. I'm not doing that anymore, but I have lots of experience shooting/producing/editing.
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Old May 10th, 2011, 08:48 AM   #4
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Re: Any race videographers onboard?

I ran into my old friend Dr. Ronnie Martin at NAB, hopefully we can
get him to pitch in on this thread, he shoots a lot of dirt track racing.
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Old May 10th, 2011, 09:06 AM   #5
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Re: Any race videographers onboard?

Automotive Racing is the whole reason I got into the video game. I usually cover autocrosses, drag racing, and HPDE's. I'm a car person myself though, so I mostly just do it for fun.

I assume the mod bogs are just one or two trucks at a time? That and drag racing wouldn't be too hard to cover, but i've found most people are cheap when it comes to spending the money. Dirt track racing can be hard to cover when you have 20+ cars on the track at the same time.
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Old May 10th, 2011, 09:47 AM   #6
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Re: Any race videographers onboard?

I found the GNCC races to be extremely challenging. 12-mile tracks through the woods, streams, mud, you name it . . . and hundreds of riders going at once!

No matter what types of races we covered, it was absolutely necessary to have someone dedicated to calling the shots (a director) -- watching for battles happening, passes, crashes, changes in the lead, etc. Also, a producer is extremely helpful for covering the part of the events that aren't racing -- the pits, racer interviews, features, etc.

Going in with a plan of how you're going to tell a story, and then having the right people there to organize and execute it, is one way to ensure a great production.
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Old May 27th, 2011, 11:49 AM   #7
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Re: Any race videographers onboard?

About a month in, the going is slow thus far... sales are pretty low, but I'm certain it's not a matter of the video quality. More likely is the marketing and consumer awareness, etc.

The previous poster who commented about these being relatively easy is right: trucks run one at a time down one of two parallel courses. Simple station self near finish line, keep iris tight for deep focus, follow and zoom out.

Problems (aside from unexpectedly low sales):
Now, I knew there would be mud... it's that kind of event, after all. I put a rain cover over my Z1 for barrier protection, and as the trucks fly by, the lens is pointed perpendicular and shielded by the hood/rain cover, and I'm rotated to the point where my back and head catch most of the airborne gobs.

Last event was the first where I fully learned about the gobs pushed forcibly FORWARD by some trucks. At the end of one run, a huge muddy THWAP caked half the lens (well, UV filter) and munged up the interior of the lens hood (which is now stuck open, even after thorough cleaning). I swiped off as much mud as I could, scratching all sorts of pretty patterns into the UV filter and recording some stock expletives as I rushed to catch the next driver in line (barely did).

Now I'm planning some sort of sturdy snoot that will protect the lens from all but the most direct missiles, attach and detach easily, and hold up to a sideways blow from a half-pound ball of mud.

Or, I could wuss out and go stand further back from the action.... nah!

Anyway, here's a highlight/teaser/promotional/whatever link of some of the results
YouTube - ‪2011 Central VA Mud Bog DVD Preview‬‏
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Old May 30th, 2011, 05:31 PM   #8
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Re: Any race videographers onboard?

not that i have much to say in regards to producing these kind of videos, but i've always been interested in doing it.
for a bit, i was hooked up with this company that did NSCRA type events but they have since walked away from that.

on my own, i attempted at documenting street racing but that hasn't flown too far since, well, it is kinda illegal.

i'm still looking for something to shoot, and weddings will be the last thing i'll want to do!

i think i need more friends with extreme sports :)
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Old June 3rd, 2011, 09:36 AM   #9
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Re: Any race videographers onboard?

The YouTube video looks great!

Definitely seems like an area where you can grow.
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Old June 6th, 2011, 02:40 AM   #10
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Re: Any race videographers onboard?

I haven't commented on this topic to date because most of this thread so far seems to be about racing where there's a repetitive element ie the racers are on some sort of track or circuit. Now someone's mentioned Extreme Sports maybe this will be of interest.

A few years ago we produced a video of the Megavalanche, the world's highest and longest mountainbike marathon. It's limited to 1000 riders and starts at Pic Blanc, 10,000ft in the Grandes Rousses mountains above Alpe d'Huez in France. Like all marathons it's a mass start which is obviously where most of the "consumer" interest is focussed. The first section is down a glacier, then across a scree slope, along a goat track across the face of of the mountain, around the back of the village of Alpe d'Huez, down a second mountainside, through a steep wooded section to the end in Allemont, about 3000ft. It's about 30km in length with a vertical drop of 7000ft and takes the pros who lead the race about an hour..

There's a qualification race the previous day over a shorter, different course.

The main problem is coverage of any non-repetitive race and for this we had a mounted helicopter camera, one camera in a microlight which landed after the mountain section (Alpe d'Huez has an altiport) and then covered the through-village and wooded stages, two cameramen on skis, one of whom mounted a light motorbike at the end of the glacier, the other who was picked up there by a helicopter, plus a camera at the finish who doubled for news agency footage. I was the microlight cameraman - fortunately my pilot was happy about flying a microlight at 11,000ft.

Clearly, the scale of operation required to get that sort of coverage means that recording such events is really only practical if you're being paid for the job.

The other consideration has to be the audience. If it's committed to the sport they'll happily watch the action alone all day long. The trick is to engage the people who'd be bored stiff by bikes being ridden down lunatic steep slopes at high speed. Our approach was to cut it very fast, sometimes only two or three frames against a fairly wild rock soundtrack. If I get a moment later this year and can find the original Betacam-SP master at least of a short promo version we did and I'll do the soundtrack again with cleared music and post it in in the samples if anyone's interested.
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