Sunday, June 6, 2010
One and a Half Seconds
I am standing in the pit on a blisteringly hot summer day.
The "pit" is an area of frenzied activity at the Edmonton Indy. Cars snarl in for quick service from their crews and seconds later, tear back onto the track with an almost deafening screaming of their engines.
It is an exhilirating thing to watch. I have never been in the pits before and am not quite sure what the rules are.
Can you walk right into the area beside the track? I have a sneaking suspicion that these guys would walk right over anyone who got in their way and kill them later.
Still...I know I have only a few seconds here before the drivers take off.
I step into the area behind the pit on the opposite side of the crew hut, train my telephoto on the driver and shoot.
There is the space of a second. Maybe a second and a half.
The crew lowers the car. The driver shifts slightly and I can feel sudden intensity bristling from him. He is total focus.
I am in a race of my own, because an instant after I take the picture, he's gone.
I watch him go, the rear end of his car fishtailing just a little as it seeks purchase on the hot track.
No one killed me. No one walked over me. No one told me to get the hell out of the pit area.
And I got my shot.