Moto-x at Cambois

Posted on 5 May 2013, 17:10

After another rather disappointing trip to Newcastle Airport – the buggers really don’t want photographers about – Mark Mowbray and I decided it was time to have a look at PJMX – an excellent moto-cross facility in Cambois (pronounced “Cammus“, incidentally!), north of the River Blyth – just two or three miles from my front door as the crow flies.

We didn’t know what to expect or even whether we’d be allowed access to the better shooting locations (in short, we expected it to be as restrictive as Croft Circuit) but after making ourselves known to the owners and agreeing to wear hi-viz jackets, we were allowed unfettered access as long as we kept off the tracks when the bikes were running.

This wasn’t a race day, so maybe things would be different then, but I was really impressed by this level of accessibility.

Even so, we were rather guarded – I didn’t want to take the mickey – but not only did I find some locations with real potential, I’ve earmarked other spots for my next visit, which won’t be long!

The following aren’t perfect – with hindsight I’d have preferred more wheel blur (although a quick look around the ‘net shows that many moto-x images have “frozen” wheels, and it’s not easy to pan with a suitably slow shutter speed when the bike is moving in three dimensions) – but the light was good for the most part; I could choose where I was in relation to it; and as a first go I’m not at all disappointed.


Moto-x, Cambois


Moto-x, Cambois


Moto-x, Cambois


Moto-x, Cambois


Moto-x, Cambois


Moto-x, Cambois


Moto-x, Cambois


Moto-x, Cambois


Moto-x, Cambois


Moto-x, Cambois


Moto-x, Cambois


Moto-x, Cambois


Moto-x, Cambois


Moto-x, Cambois


Moto-x, Cambois


Moto-x, Cambois


Moto-x, Cambois


Moto-x, Cambois


Moto-x, Cambois


Moto-x, Cambois

As usual, these are with the 7D and Sigma 120-300mm f/2.8 OS – naked lens this time, no need for TCs – and again, being able to zoom made a huge difference in terms of framing.

What’s interesting (to me, anyway) is that although I’ve been using and advocating several Raw converters lately – chief among them being Photo Ninja and DxO Optics Pro 8 – these were all converted in Lightroom, and I find myself wondering why on earth do I ever think of using anything else?

Good as these others are (and to be clear, they are), nothing else comes close in terms of pure IQ and functionality (Lr’s highlight recovery is still the one to beat) and versatility, thanks to the availability of brushes for selective editing.



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