Life Through a Lens: Spielberg and Silverstone (Austrian & British GP’s)

Life Through a Lens: Spielberg and Silverstone (Austrian & British GP’s)

Mark Sutton talks ESPN through his favourite shots from the Austrian and British Grands Prix

Ferrari’s Season In A Shot

Camera model: NIKON D5 | Exposure time: 1/1600s | Aperture: F5.6 | ISO speed: 400 | Lens: 500mm telephoto.

This was just a bizarre one. I was walking behind the photo tower and there was a huge bang, I thought ‘what the hell was that’ thinking a car had hit a barrier. By the time I got around there the car was just sat in the middle of the track so I poked my camera through the fence. There was a nice sequence of him climbing out of the car. He wanted to run across the main straights to the pits but they wouldn’t let him. This is my favourite shot of the sequence because you’ve got the Mercedes in the distance and this picture probably sums up Ferrari’s season so far — lots of little issues and wasted opportunities while Mercedes have stayed out in front.

Procar Race

Camera model: NIKON D5 | Exposure time: 1/1000s | Aperture: F13 | ISO speed: 1000 | Lens: 70-200mm zoom with 1.4 converter.

People love these Procar races, it was amazing seeing the reaction on social media to this race. This is something they used to do on a regular basis, putting drivers into one car for special races which formed its own championship. In Austria a bunch of the old guys went out, including Niki Lauda, on what was a bit more of a parade than a race. It was great to hear the roar of the engines, the pure power of a normally-aspirated engine.

It was a pretty good spectacle. Marc Surer went off on the first lap and then we saw him in the paddock trying to hide his face from everyone, he looked quite embarrassed. It was great to see some of the old timers there, they certainly enjoyed themselves being back in them. I’d love to see them doing something like this for modern F1 drivers because the fans enjoy it, it’s a bit different.

Awkward Halo

Camera model: NIKON D5 | Exposure time: 1/400s | Aperture: F4.5 | ISO speed: 1600 | Lens: 70-200mm zoom.

This was before Sebastian Vettel and Ferrari tested the Halo device at Silverstone. I think I captured this moment quite well. We obviously got the standard pictures of him going in and out of the garage with the Halo on but this a shot of him actually squeezing in and out of the car. This shows how awkward it is to get out, one of the main concerns about the device. Halo pretty much is the size of the cockpit but there’s another barrier to overcome for the driver or for a marshal extracting him from the car. One he had got out his foot nearly got caught on it as well, highlighting further reasons it perhaps needs revaluating before a decision is made.

Safety Car Start

Camera model: NIKON D5 | Exposure time: 1/1000s | Aperture: F9 | ISO speed: 200 | Lens: 70-200mm zoom.

It was pretty surreal being on the grid when this sudden downpour occurred. Everyone was scrambling around for new tyres, trying to not get their cockpits wet, finding umbrellas for their VIPs, it was a bit ridiculous! It was a shame — and controversial — they started under the Safety Car but these two shots show just how bad the spray was for those further back in the pack.

The first few laps were pretty chaotic because people changed immediately for intermediates, knowing it was already drying quite quickly. The only thing annoying about this picture is that you can see what looks like an empty grandstand in the background — it does not give a fair reflection of the Silverstone crowd at all. You can see the packed grandstand to the left, the one opposite the pit lane.

Celebrations

Camera model: NIKON D5 | Exposure time: 1/1000s | Aperture: F6.3 | ISO speed: 250 | Lens: 500mm telephoto.

It was great seeing Lewis Hamilton’s celebrations at Silverstone. He genuinely went beyond what is expected of most drivers when they win a race, engaging with the fans and generally looking like he was having the time of his life. The champagne shots like this are always good fun as the drivers put aside any differences of frustrations and enjoy themselves on the podium for a brief moment. With the pendulum swinging between Hamilton and Nico Rosberg it’s important to get as many different shots of the pair as possible.

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