Filming Supercross in England
Well, 6 months ago I was sitting on my couch watching Anaheim 1, and now I’m writing about my travels to England to shoot round one of the World Supercross Championship… Needless to say a lot has happened recently…but the story of how I got here is for another time!
There were lots of firsts on this trip, first time out of the country, first time eating a full meal on a plane, and my first time shooting on my newly purchased Canon R5C (Would not recommend breaking in a new camera at arguably the highest stakes shoot I’ve had all year). We flew overnight and of course I couldn’t even think about closing my eyes. We were flying to LONDON! A place I’d only seen in movies and never thought I’d get to visit. A note for the next round… GET SOME SLEEP. We headed straight to the arena upon touching down and I was a walking zombie the remainder of the day, and honestly the rest of the week. Jet Lag hit me like a freight train and I really struggled to get decent sleep. But that’s all beside the point.
Thursday came and went. Mostly consisting of running around Birmingham purchasing all the things I had forgotten. Then came Friday, where the real fun started.
I picked up my credential, a fancy name tag with a metal WSX logo at the top. This was a big step up, as I shot all of the SX season from the stands on my iPhone (Another story for another time). Shane and I hurried for the press conference, and the rest of the day sort of took off from there. It was cool to bump elbows with some of the “big names” in the MX media world, like Gypsy Tales. An even cooler feeling than that was to be recognized as a duo or team with Shane. I grew up admiring the Jason Anderson X Tom Journet duo and always dreamed of having that same relationship with a rider. To not only have that relationship, but be recognized and admired is humbling to say the least. After the press conference and a few other shenanigans we were done for the day. And it was time to head back to the hotel to prep my gear and get some well needed rest. I plugged in my equipment into the sketchy British convenience store power adapters and tried to fall asleep.
The feeling of waking up and driving to the track on race day is something comparable to very few things I’ve experienced, and something I had gone without feeling since Salt Lake City supercross in May. Though Shane and I have been together for many gate drops, this race day presented a long list of new variables and challenges. Along with Shane’s socials and Vlog, I had taken on work from a fairly long list of Shane’s sponsors and supporters. This made the day go by quickly as there was very little downtime. When I wasn’t shooting Shane on the track, I was gathering Establishing shots of the venue or interviewing team personnel like Diz, Shane’s mechanic. The speed at which the day passed came as a blessing and a curse and left me questioning if I got all the content I needed at the end of the day. Our day started out somewhat lackluster in regards to results, and honestly regardless of how great the shots I got were, if the results were poor… It’s all just not nearly as satisfying as putting together a celebration post. Shane qualified top 10, but I’ve learned to not count him out of anything strictly based on qualifying. He would go on to prove exactly that going 1 – 2 – 1 in the motos. The feeling of capturing that is really unlike anything else. To give you some perspective, I live with Shane and his wife Joy. I go to the track and gym with him, I see how he eats, how he trains, and everything in between. I see the work he puts in day in and day out. So to watch him rocket out of the gate, and win two of the three motos and the overall almost brought a tear to my eye. It sounds silly, “you were really emotional about a rider winning”, of course. I say it proudly too, I’m not ashamed.
Shane is one of the closest people I have in my life at the moment. Though he’s technically my boss, He’s also played a big role in my life in many other ways. For those of you who don’t know, I’m only 19. Although I’d love to say I’m an adult and can do everything on my own, I’ll be the first to admit I need someone to make sure I have my boarding pass every once and awhile. Anyways, a bit of a tangent there (A big thank you to Shane & Joy for all they do for me).
Getting shots of Shane on the top step of the podium lifting a trophy for all to see and spraying everyone with champagne is something I had yet to experience. I sure hope it isn’t the last time we get to do that.
Sunday consisted of sleeping in and driving back to London where we spent Monday and Tuesday exploring. We saw Buckingham Palace, Big Ben, and a bunch of other places that I honestly don’t even remember what they were called. Monday night was our last night in the UK, and Shane & Joy got all dressed up for some fancy sushi place that I was not invited to nor wanted to attend… AKA Foggy hit the streets for a night out on the town rolling solo. This is when it all sort of hit me. It seems weird that this moment, at the very end of the trip, is when it all sunk in, but the previous days prepping and racing were so filled that I never really had a time to soak it all in. I was walking down the street by some shops and restaurants, sun setting, recalling all the moments from the week, and truly realizing that I spent the last week in England shooting some of the best athletes in the world.
This week spent in England was truly unlike any other, a dream come true, and an unforgettable experience. Despite knowing this was only the beginning of our 6 round worldwide extravaganza, boarding the plane back to the states was a major bummer. I’d like to thank Shane & Joy for continuing to believe in me and my vision, the other brands and sponsors that hired me to shoot content for them, the entire WSX & Headstrong Films team, and most importantly all of you, the readers, and supporters of me: Just a kid with a camera. Cheers.