Ford GT Night Practice

076a2296Night practice or racing is always a treat.  The darkness brings the cars to life in different ways.  The Thursday evening practice prior to the Petit LeMans will never be about outright pace, but rather getting cars, crews and drivers some time to acclimate and prepare for the last two hours or so of the race.

Spotting cars is extremely difficult at night, so crews customize to make it easier.  While all cars use a backlit number panel and the running position display, most add other features as well.  The two Ford GT cars cleverly made use of the inside of the buttresses at the rear of the car to splash light across the door panels and light up the fuel filler portal.  The #67 car used a blue accent and the #66 car used a red accent.

This shot was taken at the exit of Turn 7 from the outside of the track looking back towards the infield –  almost the furthest point on the track from pit lane and one of the darkest spots at the track.  Richard Westbrook was at the controls.

Camera Settings – 1/100 shutter speed, f/4, ISO 2500, 420mm.  Shooting at night in full darkness can be a challenge.  Light is at a premium which makes any shots (like panning shots) done at slower shutter speeds very difficult.  The adjustment for a slower shutter speed in this case was a higher ISO which increased the light sensitivity of the camera sensor and a wider aperture which increased the opening of the shutter to gather more light.

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