- Life Through a Lens
World Cup fever, F1 in 3D and a Champagne moment
In the week leading up to the grand prix all the talk was about the Red Bull drivers Mark Webber and Sebastian Vettel and what the atmosphere would be like in the team after the accident in Turkey. We had the news that Webber's contract had been extended along with a picture of them laughing together as if to say everything was back to normal.
But I was watching them very closely on Thursday during the autograph session and it's pretty obvious there is still a bit of a problem. They weren't acknowledging each other as much as usual and it seemed a little cold. I wouldn't say it's a divide in the team, but they're certainly not as friendly as they were before. They now know where they stand with each other; they know that they are huge rivals and that each other is willing to take a big risk if it means they can beat the other. That changes the dynamic.
But for the most part it was all good fun and, with the World Cup swinging into action, there was a great atmosphere inside the paddock. Lots of the TV crews were trying to get footage of the drivers getting involved and showing off their football skills. One broadcaster had a good ploy where they would just roll a ball on the ground towards a driver to see if they would flick it up and do a couple of keep ups. It worked every time and it was great to see the drivers taking something a little less seriously. Of course, it made for good photos for me too.
Another interesting thing I came across was a 3D camera that they had out at turn two. It was a bit bizarre because they carried it out midway through qualifying and only caught the end of Q3. I've heard they have to do a lot of work on the images to calibrate them properly after they've been shot, so I'm not sure when we see the finished result or exactly what the purpose was. It took two guys to carry it out there and I spoke to one of them who said it was all a bit trial and error at the moment.
For the race I spent most of time shooting at the first two corners because, a bit like Turkey, there was so much action that you didn't want to miss anything. Being there also meant that I could get back to the pits after the finish to watch the cars coming back to the pitlane. I got some great shots of Lewis rolling into parce ferme, he undid his seatbelt and was punching the air to the cheers of the crowd.
Next up we've got Valencia, which is based around a port and is a fun circuit to go to. It still lacks the glamour of somewhere like Monaco but we can get some good photos there, with the old architectural buildings and also the ultra-modern arts' centre in the background. This season we're going there a bit earlier in the year so the temperatures won't be as high as when we've been there in August the last two years. I'm hoping that will make things a bit more interesting than it's been in the past, because the teams might not be able to rely on the tyre data they have had from previous years, so it could mix it up. We'll just have to wait and see on that, but it should be another good weekend either way.