Last month the IMSA WeatherTech and Michelin Pilot Challenge cars were at Lime Rock Park for the North East GP and Lime Rock Park 120, respectively. This blog will be about the first two days of this event. Hope you like the photos.
Left Boston mid-morning for the three hour drive to Lime Rock Park. For this race event, was lucky to have the opportunity to photograph from the “other side of the fence”. After arriving, parked the car at the Midway, then went for a walk around the paddock to get my bearings and to photograph the teams as they prepared for the event.
Started at the IMSA Technical Inspection area, for shots of the WeatherTech teams and cars as they waited for their inspection by the IMSA officials.
Walked down the A paddock, past the “eye-catching” yellow livery of the #3 Corvette Racing Corvette C8.R to get photos of the WeatherTech cars in their garages.
The #23 Heart of Racing Team Aston Martin Vantage GT3 (top) and #96 Turner Motorsport BMW M6 GT3 (bottom).
Also needed to get some shots of the Michelin Pilot Challenge cars, so headed over to the B paddock.
The #3 Motorsports In Action McLaren 570S GT4 lined up and ready for inspection.
Inspection time for the #4 Winward Racing Mercedes-AMG GT GT4. Continued walking around the B paddock for shots of the cars in their garages, then headed back to the car, and drove to the hotel that I was staying at in Great Barrington to get some food, organize my camera gear and for a good night’s rest.
For the first practice session of the Michelin Challenge at 10.05 am, went to the outside of Big Bend. This is a great location to photograph from, especially when the sun is out, since it lights the front and side of the cars as they go through this part of the track. Started at the right side of the viewing stand next to the run off part of the track so could get head on shots of the cars as they came down the Sam Posey straight.
Entering the track from pit lane with the #51 Copeland Motorsports Hyundai Veloster N TCR. The paintwork on this car really stood out in the morning sun.
Three Chevrolet Camaro GT4.R’s in a row, being led by the #71 Rebel Rock Racing down Sam Posey straight.
Into Big Bend with the Van Der Steur Racing Hyundai Veloster N TCR.
The #52 Auto Technic Racing BMW M4 GT4 took the outside line as it passed the McClaren.
Sunny skies over the pedestrian bridge, which enables access from the inside of the track to the outfield spectator area. The #64 Team TGM Chevrolet Camaro GT4.R.
Continued walking to my left, to a location at about the center of Big Bend so I could get panning shots of the cars as they sped by the paddock.
The #52 Auto Technic Racing BMW M4 GT4.
Next tried some slower panning shots which really brought out the textures in the grass. The #16 Wright Motorsports Porsche 718 Cayman GT4 Clubsport speeding through Big Bend.
Exiting Big Bend with the #7 VOLT Racing with Archangel Aston Martin Vantage GT4, being followed closely by another car.
Decided to stay at this location for the WeatherTech Championship practice session since it started shortly after the Michelin Challenge session at 11.25 am. It also gave me a chance to catch my breath, have some water and eat some snacks. It wasn’t long until the WeatherTech Championship cars hit the track. The #9 Pfaff Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3R with its cool red and black plaid livery.
Another one my favorite cars. Bond, James Bond. The #23 Heart of Racing Team Aston Martin Vantage GT3.
The Lamborghini’s always look great at speed, guess its there wedge-shape which lends well to speed. The #19 GRT Grasser Racing Team Lamborghini Huracan GT3.
The #96 Turner Motorsport BMW M6 GT3.
The blue paintwork of the #16 Wright Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3R matched the color of the signage on the pedestrian bridge.
Another shot of the #9 Pfaff Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3R.
The #16 Wright Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3R.
Entering and exiting Big Bend with the #3 Corvette Racing Corvette C8.R.
Liked the “give it a whirl” sticker on the rear of the #1 Paul Miller Racing Lamborghini Huracan GT3.
Took this shot so you could get an idea of how Lime Rock Park is situated in the beautiful Berkshire mountains. Its a great place to watch car racing with a picnic lunch under the trees.
As you follow the cars leaving Big Bend, it’s possible to get a panning shot as they speed past the Marshalls stand into the Esses. The #16 Wright Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3R. After the session ended it was time for lunch, so headed over to the paddock to grab something to eat and drink, as well as to download my photos from the camera for the morning sessions.
The Michelin Challenge practice session 2 was scheduled to start at 1.25 pm, so headed out early so had time to walk from the paddock to the inside of the Uphill. Here’s a shot of the #19 Van Der Steur Racing Hyundai Veloster N TCR at the base of the Uphill, which gives you a sense of the height of the trees that line this track.
The #96 Turner Motorsport BMW M6 GT3 ascending the Uphill.
The second practice session for the WeatherTech Championship started at 2.45 pm, so went down to the inside of the Uphill to the end of No Name Straight for head on and elevated shots of the cars. The #9 Pfaff Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3R (top) and #1 Paul Miller Racing Lamborghini Huracan GT3 (bottom).
After the end of the practice session, walked over to the inside of the Lefthander for the Michelin Challenge qualifying session which started at 4.20 pm. The #84 Atlanta Speedwerks Honda Civic FK7 TCR illuminated by some nice late afternoon light.
One of my favorite things to do at the Esses, is to track the cars using a 500 mm lens, as they navigate the Righthander into No Name Straight. The #33 Bryan Herta Autosport w/ Curb-Agajanian Hyundai Elantra N TCR (top) and 19 Van Der Steur Racing Hyundai Veloster N TCR (bottom).
For the 5.15 pm WeatherTech Championship qualifying decided to get some shots of the cars in the pits. So went to the pit out area behind the armco near the Emergency Medical Service building. The #96 Turner Motorsport BMW M6 GT3 (top) and #3 Corvette Racing Corvette C8.R (bottom).
Its also a great location for front on shots of the cars as they exit the pits.
Another reason I like this location, is since with a long lens, you can get some 3/4 panning shots of the cars speeding down Sam Posey straight. The #66 Gradient Racing Acura NSX GT3.
As the qualifying sessions progressed, went down to the inside of the Esses. A wide shot of the #1 Paul Miller Racing Lamborghini Huracan GT3 to give you an idea of the ambiance of this part of the track (top) and the #23 Heart of Racing Team Aston Martin Vantage GT3 (bottom).
Fo my last shots of the day, used the 500mm lens to pan the cars leaving the Righthander into No Name Straight. Another shot of the #66 Gradient Racing Acura NSX GT3.
Thanks for spending your time reading this blog.