I visited California’s Buttonwillow Raceway on April 5, 2014 for the NASA / WERC 3-hour endurance race to capture some photos. Endurance races are fantastic photo opportunities due to the variety of cars and lighting conditions (they nearly always run through sunrise or sunset) . Here are a few of my favorites.
On March 16th 2014, a field of 83 drivers slid their cars around Glen Helen Raceway’s dirt course for the 2014 Porterfield Glen Helen RallyCross #1, the first event of the year.
The massive turnout brought an incredible variety of vehicles out to the race including Mazda Miatas, BMWs, VWs, a Dodge Neon, and others, with 50% of the grid consisting solely of Subarus.
Danny Downey (1992 Dodge Stealth #711) started the season with a Stock 2WD class win, leading by 13 seconds over John Black (2012 Ford #34) ), with Matt Price (2013 Ford Focus #39) close behind. With with Downey’s previous rival Bill Martin — the 2013 Championship winner for Stock 2WD — having moved to Stock AWD class this year in a new car, Downey doesn’t yet have a close rival in this year’s championship.
Stock AWD class saw a very close finish between rivals James Veatch (1997 Subaru Impreza #155) and Mathew Mendoza (2004 Subaru WRX #420) with only 0.416 seconds separating the two but Veatch coming out ahead — that’s a mere 0.1% difference in total times! Bill Martin finished 6 seconds behind the win, but expect to see him remain a contender for the rest of the season.
Prepared 2WD saw a grid of 3 drivers, with Sarkis Mazmanian (1993 Honda Civic #777) and Vahan Yessayan (1988 Toyota Corolla FX #160) in a close battle for the lead. Mazmanian finished 0.541 seconds ahead of Yessayan — another surprisingly close race that mimicked what happened in Stock AWD. It’s looking to be a good year!
Brent Smith took the Prepared AWD class lead in his 2009 Subaru STI (#433) with the fastest total time of the day and 7.3 seconds over Daryl Fike’s 2005 Subaru STI #16.
Modified 2WD saw the largest grid of cars with a total of 20 entries. Eric Martin took the lead in his 1982 VW Rabbit (#4) with a 5.41 second lead over Michael Cadwell’s 1994 BMW 325is (#854). David Moss (2010 Ford Focus #22) finished in 3rd, 4.93 seconds behind Cadwell’s BMW.
The flagship Modified AWD class saw 18 total entries and some close finishes. Cameron Meng (2006 Subaru WRX #511) took the class lead, followed by Mark Ackenback’s 2004 Subaru STI (#733) and Thomas Bloess’ 2008 Subaru WRX (#31).
Last Sunday was the final race of the 2013 Porterfield RallyCross Series at Glen Helen Raceway. I showed with and competed in my Apocalypse Wagon, scored enough points to hold my lead, and won the 2013 season! The rest of the day was spent shooting thousands (THOUSANDS) of photos of the highly-entertaining afternoon run groups.
Here are some of my favorites. I shot these photos using my new Canon 70D with the EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS STM lens. I try to minimize post-processing. Usually just a bit of contrast and exposure adjustment.