[Photos] Silverstone

So this weekend I was fortunate enough to get the chance to drive a Lamborghini Gallardo around part of the F1 circuit at Silverstone, home of the British Grand Prix. I was being tutored by an ex F1 driver called Ian Ashley who seemed to be rather frustrated with my refusal to short-shift up through the box on command. I know it’s not very mechanically sympathetic of me to keep redlining a highly-tuned V10, but then how often am I going to get a chance to thrash a Lambo around a racetrack?

It’s terrifying how much there is to remember when you’re going full whack around a race circuit. Hitting the apex, getting on the power smoothly through the exit, it’s not – as I had imagined – just a case of driving as fast as possible. There’s a real art to racing. Still witnesses tell me I was the fastest car out there for my few laps, and I managed to overtake about half a dozen cars – including another Lambo and several Ferarris – without being passed myself, so maybe the call from Ron Dennis is imminent.

The whole day was brilliantly organised, and Silverstone itself is a joy to visit. As well as the Lambo drive I had a couple of enjoyable sessions of karting, a hot lap or two around the track at the hands of a Le Mans driver and a very pleasant lunch in the visitor centre café.

Anyway, while I was there I managed to snap off a few shots of the various exciting cars and bikes on track. It was proof, if it was ever needed, that too fast a shutter speed can be a curse with moving vehicles. The shots at around 1/2000 froze the action too much, leaving the cars looking like they’d been parked. Slowing things down to about 1/400 added the requisite motion blur to backgrounds and wheels – a technique I’ll be using lots more of when I head off to Le Mans for the 24 hour race this summer.

The full selection of shots is up on Flickr, and you can peruse the edited highlights here. As always comments are welcome.


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Categories: Photos

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