Following on from my latest sporting event I recently took another opportunity to get straight back into the saddle and carry on attempting to hone my photographic skills and improve my knowledge by putting into practice the things I read about regularly. Now the blog title and pun might lead you to believe I was off to the 3.15 at Aintree but quite the opposite, this is a different type of beast and one that comes in the form of two wheels and a 600cc engine! The sport in question is Road Racing.
It's slowly becoming a dying breed due to health and safety regulations amongst other factors here but it still has a mass following in Northern Ireland. The fans congregate from far and wide to experience the smell of burning rubber and listen to the distinct sound of brakes locking and riders risking life and limb as they hit break neck speeds of up to 200mph while careering down the narrow country roads. There's nothing like it and if you ever get the chance it's an event you don't want to miss when visiting the Emerald Isle. You can find out more about the event here - Cookstown 100
This is the opening Irish national road race of the season and Northern Ireland’s Michael Dunlop stole the show with a stunning Superbike double. Guy Martin fought hard in his duels with Michael but Dunlop clinched a Cookstown 100 double, with victories in the 10-lap feature race and the Open event. He also broke the course lap record on three occasions on the way to overhauling early leader Guy Martin in the main race of a sun-drenched day. The crowds turned out in their droves and I hate to say it but the weather hasn't been as good since and that was almost a month ago! Godamn you global warming....maybe these bikes don't help either.
For the motorbike aficionados next up on the cards is the North West 200 on the 18th May with practice nights this week. It looks set to be one of the most closely contested for many years and has attracted the biggest names in the sport.
Hope you've enjoyed my selection of images and a little bit about the day itself and for the photography geeks these were all shot handheld, jpeg and edited in LR4. Some might not like the processing or the style of some of the shots but that's how I see things and how I'll remember the day. You either like them or you don't but as my photography journey continues I'm slowly learning that people's opinions are entirely subjective and as such should be taken with a pinch of salt unless you have specifically asked for input. Don't lose sight of that as you travel the route well traveled before you.
All the Best, Nick.