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I enjoy doing fun things outdoors. Family adventures, hunting, fishing, hiking, photography, 4 wheeling, etc. Get out there and enjoy ... NOTE: PLEASE CLICK ON MY PHOTOS IN THE BLOG POST SO THEY WILL BECOME LARGER.

Saturday, September 17, 2016

New England Dragway - Super Chevy Show

Anthony and I went to the Super Chevy Show at New England Dragway this past Saturday.  There were several categories including Bracket Eliminations, Stock/Super Stock, Outlaw 10.5, and Pro Comp, Pro 7.  Along with the racing there was a car show with some very nice cars. 

I wasn’t sure what to expect as I had never been to the drag races.  I brought ear plugs which turned out to be a good idea.

One of my first pictures was of this dragster going down the track.  The exhaust heat coming from this dragster caused this mirage effect (the refraction, bending or reflection of rays of light by a layer of heated air of varying density).

There are bleachers on both sides of the track.  I was a bright sunny day so I headed for the side with the sun to my back which is better for pictures. 

I moved around a bit in the stands to figure out a good location.  There are jersey barriers on the outside of each lane for safety reasons.  I went to the top of the bleachers to try to get a better angle on the near lane cars.  I couldn’t get an angle high enough over the barrier so they obstructed the tires a bit.  No obstruction for the far lane cars. 

Last week at the Loudon motorcycle races I practiced panning.  I continued practicing playing with my shutter speeds throughout the day.

We watched several runs then headed over to look at the cars in the car show.  We passed by some of the trailers where people were working on their cars.  I liked the back-to-the-future face painted on this car.  This hub cap captured us checking out some of the cars.
There was a TV station interviewing some of the car owners.  I really liked this truck and often wonder why the shows on Velocity always lower things to make street rods.  This is my kind of truck …

Many of the cars were not only fast but very pretty.  This is an expensive sport.  Even though there was competition among the teams several times the announcer asked for parts or tools to help another team. 

Two jet dragsters raced in the afternoon.  There was lots of fire and smoke.  They were loud going down the track so I'm glad I had the ear plugs.  They were impressive and entertaining.  

I liked this colorful dragster and slowed my shutter speed down.  I liked the blurry people watching in the stands.

I’m not sure why buy I love gassers and saw 2 of them.  Gassers are based on production models from the 1930s to mid-1960s, which have been stripped of extraneous weight and jacked up using a beam axle to provide better weight distribution on acceleration.  I think they look great.  I like to research and wondered where the name "Gasser" came from.  From doing my searching I found this answer on the internet from a guy named Randy ...kudos to him for his explanation.

"A "Gasser" is slang for a car that was built to race in the NHRA Gas Classes.  Those classes ranged from AA/GSupercharged (top class) to H/G. 

The cars were purpose-built full-bodied race cars.  The modifications allowed were very extensive and so was lightening of the car.  The cars were built to a cubic inch/weight ratio to determine the classification.  The main rule was the car needed to operate on gasoline.

These cars were the top of the gasoline-fueled full bodied classes.  The next classes up were Fuel Altered (before Funny Cars) and Top Gas (front engined dragsters at the time) and Top Fuel.

Most Gassers employed mechanical fuel injection.  The Gas Supercharged ranks used mechanical fuel injection AND a blower.  Examples of those are Stone-Woods-Cook, Mazmanian, George Hurst, etc.

The "Gasser look" stemmed from the car's high power output and the poor tires that were available in the day.  Many competitors found that if you raised the car up, you could achieve more weight transfer hence more traction. Like all things in drag racing, sometimes this concept was carried to the extreme.

This period was before the time of 4-link suspension, sticky tires, tubbed rear ends, etc.  Most cars were raised in the front with a straight axle and used very long lift bars on the rear suspension.  Most sported fuel injected engine combos and manual transmissions or clutch-flite or clutch-hydro transmissions.  They made alot of power for their time.  The tire and suspension technology was in it's infancy, so finding traction was always a prime concern.
Because these cars were so popular, the camshaft manufacturer used them to spotlight their newest cams.  This led to "Cam Wars" between Ed Iskenderian, Sig Erson, Jack Engle, etc.  One week it was purported that a car had an Engle cam and had switched to an Isky cam and picked up huge amounts, or vice-versa.  Everyone wanted to know whose cam was in the winner's engines each weekend.  Then the street guys would run out and buy the hottest new cam for their street car in hopes of emulating that huge performance gain made by their favorite "Gasser".  This was a very colorful period in drag racing." ...  

I wish I had more Gasser pictures to show you but I only saw 2

To recap last week … I was taking motorcycle pictures and my camera battery died.  REALLY ...

As I was taking these pictures my screen lit up and said I was out of memory.  REALLY … 

No excuse with a 32 gig SD card in my camera other than poor picture management.  They say it isn’t a good idea to delete pictures from your camera.  Well … I did some deleting and continued for a bit longer.

Anthony and I had a great time.  I’ll go to future events and take more pictures. 

Saturday, September 10, 2016

Loudon Motorcycle Races - NHMS


I have taken pictures during Loudon Classic motorcycle week.  There are other motorcycle race events during the summer so I decided to take pictures at another event.

I arrived before the races started to take pictures in the garage area.  When walking around I saw a few motorcycles I had taken pictures of in the past.

It was overcast all day with thunderstorms in the area.  Cloudy skies can make colors pop so I was hoping for some good color.  I felt rain drops mid-afternoon but nothing came of it.

There were 13 motorcycle races scheduled.  When the first race started I was in position and ready to take pictures.  As the different races progressed I took pictures around the track and infield then decided to head for the grand stands which I haven’t done before.  Several weeks from now there would be a couple hundred thousand people in the stands for the NASCAR race.  For now there were just a people in the stands. 

I found a couple locations by the track fence I liked and started snapping away.  It gives a different perspective.  I progressed from the first corner down the straight to the far corner stopping when I thought I had a good spot.  I also headed up
to the top row in the stands to zoom in on other parts of the track.

I took many shots from different angles.  I also slowed my shutter speed down and practiced some panning.  I should do that more as I didn’t feel fluid in my movement following the riders.  It’s called being rusty.  Sometimes when you experiment it can be unpredictable but can create some unusual pictures.
I headed back to the infield, over the pit wall, to the track wall.  I thought I would practice more panning.  I slowed my shutter speed down and played a bit more with panning.  It was more difficult than I thought as the motorcycles were pretty close, going well over 100mph when they were passing me, and they were accelerating as I was in the middle of the straight.  I tried to keep my camera movement level and was successful on some but not on others which created more unusual pictures.  It was fun to experiment and practice and I need do that more often.

Just when I was having fun experimenting and thought things are going well my low battery indicator gave the red light and shut my camera down.  Really … my battery died
 … no spare battery … I was done after race 7.  Nuts!!

I know zooming in and out wears a battery more quickly.  It happened to me at the AMA Hillcimb for the same reason.  Guess I should buy a backup battery.

I watched a bit longer then headed home.  Fun stuff … 
Go to the search bar at the top of my blog and type in Loudon Classic to see past posts.