Our trip to T Town, the Valley Preferred Cycling Center.
Alessandro and Mike are warming up before the race starts at 12 pm.
We went to the T Town velodrome on this past Saturday, 6/29. It was me, Alessandro, and Mike. This was my second time going there as a race photographer. We started the day very early since Ale has to pickup Mike and I had to meet up with him. We got to the velodrome a bit before 10 am. We ran some errands and moving our bikes and equipment to the big tent, and it was 11 am already. Ale and Mike were already warming up and I was setting up my camera and getting myself acquainted with the race schedules of the day. Mind you, track racing is a bit more complicated since there are so many races being featured in a single day. I am getting the hang of it and be able to anticipate shots (when and where to shoot) based on what races are being featured.
Of course, by 11am, the temperature was already near 100 degree. Extremely humid. Somewhat sunny. The asphalt was burning hot and my camera equipment was getting increasingly warmer too. Fortunately, we were sitting by the big fan and so it was not as bad. Everyone was expecting a storm coming around 3 pm. Judging by my last time shooting the race, the races should end before 3 pm.
The highlight of the day was obviously Mike is slowly racing into shape and did much better than last week. More comfortable racing with the 55+ Masters and be able to stay with the field. Ale dominated and won all 3 Master 35+ races. Today was his first time racing track this season since the last National he did last year. However, he has been placing top 3 in the local road races. For me, I am still learning in how to shoot track racing in this velodrome. The light asphalt, adding an overhead intense July sun, can ruin many shot opportunity. However, I am not a stranger shooting under bright intense sunny condition. Shooting NYC park races before dawn isn't exactly a cakewalk either.
If we left the tent area, after the race, few minutes later, most of our equipment would have gotten all wet. Thanks Mike for accurately counting down the time, in minutes, when the storm would come down on us. When it poured, it poured. It was so bad that we couldn't see the road ahead at all. It took another hour for the storm to ease up a bit. Later, Ale and Mike met up with their old friend and we just chatted for another 2 hours+...about cycling, track racing, and all things cycling related....
It was a fun and very productive day for all of us. You can see all the photos on the HH Racing Facebook page here.
This was our situation by the time we left.