Lewis Hamilton at Montreal's infamous "Wall of Champions." All photos: Jamey Price

F1 2016: Through ace photog Jamey Price’s lens (PHOTOS)

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Editor’s note: One of the most talented photographers shooting a variety of motorsports series, with a number of different clients, is Jamey Price. Jamey and I met a few years ago as his career took foot, and it’s only grown in stature and ability since. Jamey shot most of this year’s Formula 1 calendar and has selected some of his favorite shots from the year. A dude that’s as cool as his shots, you can follow more of Jamey’s portfolio on Instagram, at @JameyPricePhoto, at Twitter at @JameyPricePhoto, on Facebook at Jamey Price Photographer, or on his website at jameypricephoto.com. Without further adieu, here’s Jamey… 

I cover lots of different types of racing all over the world. I’ve had the privileged of attending almost the entire IMSA WeatherTech Season, the 24 Hours of Le Mans, the Lone Star Le Mans FIA World Endurance Championship round at Circuit of the Americas,as well as seven races of the Formula 1 World Championship, working as a small part of a talented team photographers with XPB Images.

Though history will remember 2016 as the year Lewis lost the championship, and not necessarily the year Nico won the championship, there was lots of on and off track drama elsewhere with some epic racing at iconic circuits. These are some of my favorites.

April 15-17, 2016: Chinese Grand Prix, Shanghai, Marcus Ericsson, Sauber
April 15-17, 2016: Chinese Grand Prix, Shanghai, Marcus Ericsson, Sauber

Though it may not be the most interesting F1 photo of all time, to me, this is what China is all about. Grey skies and a big long straight. As photographers, we walk the track backwards on Thursday so that we can see what we would see as the cars come past us, but also so that you catch most of the drivers walking by you. This is the Sauber F1 team doing their track walk into the Shanghai smog. Nikon D4, 190mm, 1/2000, f2.8

April 15-17, 2016: Chinese Grand Prix, Shanghai, Rio Haryanto (IND), Manor F1
April 15-17, 2016: Chinese Grand Prix, Shanghai, Rio Haryanto (IND), Manor F1

Though it is far from the most competitive car on the grid, I personally find the Manor to be one of the prettiest. It has lovely curves and an interesting livery. Even the back marker F1 teams build stunning works of automotive art that would demolish any other race car around a circuit. With the sun behind it, I underexposed the image to show the curves and edges. Nikon D4s, 70mm, 1/40, f22

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I personally can’t get enough of Monaco. There is no where else like it on Earth. Standing inside the famous Fairmont hairpin, the morning sun shone as practice 1 got underway. Monaco is the one track that you can feel the history oozing out of it’s every curve and piece of tarmac. Nikon D4, 14mm, 1/15, f22

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This is what Monaco is all about. The Glitz and glamour of an afternoon lunch at the Hotel de Paris in Monaco, while the F1 cars wiz by a few feet away during practice 2. I can’t imagine what it would have been like to be on this patio during the V10 days. Nikon D4, 27mm, 1/1600, f2.8

May 25-29, 2016: Monaco Grand Prix. Lewis Hamilton (GBR), Mercedes, Daniel Ricciardo (AUS), Red Bull
May 25-29, 2016: Monaco Grand Prix. Lewis Hamilton (GBR), Mercedes, Daniel Ricciardo (AUS), Red Bull

For the photographers, Monaco is the most special venue we visit, and it is made even more special when there is a cracking race to shoot. Daniel Ricciardo was on FIRE all weekend. He was determined to get his first Monaco win. But a pitstop error, and Lewis making his Mercedes nearly impossible to pass on the narrow streets ruined Ricciardo’s day. But for lap after lap, it was an epic battle and one that had me captivated watching it in person. Nikon D4s, 14mm, 1/1250, f4

May 25-29, 2016: Monaco Grand Prix. Daniel Ricciardo (AUS), Red Bull
May 25-29, 2016: Monaco Grand Prix. Daniel Ricciardo (AUS), Red Bull

I rarely post pictures from the usually dull and boring post race press conference. No one says anything of interest, and normally it is barely worth attending or shooting. But this one was different. Having just been denied a win at Monaco, Red Bull driver Daniel Ricciardo was inconsolable. His face said everything we needed to know about how his day had gone. Nikon D4s, 500mm, 1/125, f4

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I love shooting at the Wall of Champions. The cars are SO close and you can see the energy that the driver is carrying through the corner and then as they pass more or less underneath you. It is a hair raising place to stand, and one that makes you feel very much alive. Lewis Hamilton is always a fun driver to watch through this corner as he hurls his Mercedes from curb to curb then roars past the wall and onto another lap. A slow shutter speed and a lot of practice and luck created this picture. Nikon D4s, 60mm, 1/15, f18

June 9-12, 2016: Canadian Grand Prix. Max Verstappen, Red Bull
June 9-12, 2016: Canadian Grand Prix. Max Verstappen, Red Bull

Max Verstappen, there aren’t really enough things you can say about this young gun. He has an air, a presence about him that you don’t see in very many drivers. He has an intensity that is captivating to shoot. Nikon D4, 500mm, 1/800, f4

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Romain Grosjean stomps the loud pedal hard exiting a corner at the Hungaroring during friday practice. I am often hunting for areas with interesting or unique backgrounds and just happened to get lucky with the Frenchman really throwing his Haas F1 car around and burning a set of Pirelli tires. Nikon D4s, 700mm,1/1000, f6.3

July 21-24, 2016 - Hungarian GP, Daniel Ricciardo (AUS), Red Bull
July 21-24, 2016 – Hungarian GP, Daniel Ricciardo (AUS), Red Bull

Modern F1 cars don’t throw sparks like they used to, but it can still be a good fireworks show on occasion. From an elevated position, I watched as lap after lap, the Red Bulls would come into turn 2 and throw sparks high into the sky. So I waited for the right moment, and caught one of them in the act. Nikon D4s, 500mm, 1/2500, f5

July 21-24, 2016 - Hungarian GP, Carlos Sainz Jr. Scuderia Toro Rosso
July 21-24, 2016 – Hungarian GP, Carlos Sainz Jr. Scuderia Toro Rosso

After hot and humid conditions all weekend, it was bound to pour rain at some point, and so it did, about 30 minutes before qualifying. It was torrential. I huddled under a port potty with a few fellow photographers until we heard the cars start coming out again. The rain eased up for a minute, then got even heavier, but not before some of the cars had already started a lap. It was quickly red flagged. Nikon D4s, 500mm, 1/800, f7.1

July 21-24, 2016 - Hungarian GP, Sebastian Vettel (GER), Ferrari, Maurizio Arrivabene, team principal of Scuderia Ferrari
July 21-24, 2016 – Hungarian GP, Sebastian Vettel (GER), Ferrari, Maurizio Arrivabene, team principal of Scuderia Ferrari

The personalities are what I love most about F1. Not the cars. Not the tracks. The people. On the grid, Sebastian Vettel had a nice moment with Team Principle Maurizio Arrivabene. Arrivabene looks like a tough boss, but also a caring one too. The Scuderia has struggled for the last decade, but hopefully with these two continuing to push hard, things will come around. Nikon D4s, 24mm, 1/640, f2.5

September 4, 2016: Valtteri Bottas (FIN), Williams Martini Racing , Italian Grand Prix at Monza
September 4, 2016: Valtteri Bottas (FIN), Williams Martini Racing , Italian Grand Prix at Monza

Bottas is a driver I like a lot. He doesn’t have much drama associated with his life, he is intense, quick in the car, and photogenic. One of my favorite times to catch drivers in the moment is as they prepare to head to the grid before a race. The intensity is always very evident and can be felt in their eyes and facial expressions. Bottas is also very proud of his heritage and the white Williams Martini Racing car acts as a nice reflector of the light into his eyes. Nikon D4s, 500mm, 1/640, f4

September 4, 2016: Drivers stand for the national anthem before the Italian Grand Prix , Italian Grand Prix at Monza
September 4, 2016: Drivers stand for the national anthem before the Italian Grand Prix , Italian Grand Prix at Monza

Though it is a recent tradition, the drivers are now required to line up for the host countries’ national anthem. It can be a nice place to get scenic shots, as well as the drivers lined up in one place. Monza’s grid is always chaotic, but a rare quiet moment is something to be cherished. Though I like this photo, if I had waited 20 more seconds, I would have caught the Tri Colore fly over in the frame too, but to be honest, I forgot it was going to happen, so I shot this frame then moved to another location. Nikon D4, 18mm, 1/1600, f2.8

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Formula 1 cars are beautiful. Each is different and for different reasons. The Force India has a very unique nose cone with the slits on either side. Gorgeous afternoon light in Austin allowed me to underexpose the car, and let the shadow come out even more than normal. Waiting for the cars to go through scrutineering is one of the best times to catch them out in the open and in a quiet environment. Nikon D4s, 24mm, 1/5000, f2.8

October 21, 2016: United States Grand Prix. Esteban Gutierrez (MEX), Haas F1
October 21, 2016: United States Grand Prix. Esteban Gutierrez (MEX), Haas F1

Austin isn’t my favorite circuit. It’s big, and can be brutally hot, and finding new places and ways to shoot something that size can be hard, but shooting through a photo hole as the cars dance through the esses, I used a very slow shutter speed to catch the Haas F1 car heading toward turn 4 during friday practice. Nikon D4s, 500mm, 1/20, f22

October 22, 2016: United States Grand Prix. Lewis Hamilton (GBR), Mercedes
October 22, 2016: United States Grand Prix. Lewis Hamilton (GBR), Mercedes

Qualifying 3. This is where it counts for the teams and drivers. It’s also one of the best times of day to shoot at Circuit of the Americas. The sun is backlit to a good portion of the track, and the shadows get a little longer. As Hamilton left his garage for one last attempt at pole, I underexposed his Mercedes to create a silhouette and outline of the triple World Champion. The Mercedes’ silver livery also helps this a lot. Though 60mph doesn’t sound very fast, you don’t have more than a fraction of a second to nail the photo before the car is gone, and not to be seen in that spot again. Nikon D4s, 500mm, 1/1600, f7.1

October 28, 2016: Mexican Grand Prix. Lewis Hamilton (GBR), Mercedes
October 28, 2016: Mexican Grand Prix. Lewis Hamilton (GBR), Mercedes

Mexico’s stadium section is one of the best parts of any circuit we visit. The crowd and their energy are IMMENSE. It also makes for fun photos as there is “Mexico” sponsor boards across the track and written on the ground too. So panning the cars as they wound their way through this tight section made for fun use of color and lines. Nikon D4s, 125mm, 1/8, f20

October 30, 2016: Mexican Grand Prix. Lewis Hamilton (GBR), Mercedes, Nico Rosberg (GER), Mercedes
October 30, 2016: Mexican Grand Prix. Lewis Hamilton (GBR), Mercedes, Nico Rosberg (GER), Mercedes

After everyone had been kicked off the grid mere minutes before the race was to begin, I waited trackside next to the catch fence at the start finish line, as Lewis and Nico lined up across from each other. The championship was getting closer and closer and a Hamilton victory would put him within reach of his 4th world title. Theirs was the best kind of rivalry, and one that F1 fans will certainly miss, no matter which team or driver you chose to support. Nikon D4s, 500mm, 1/3200, f4

Ricky Brabec wins 2017 Sonora Rally (PHOTOS, VIDEO)

Ricky Brabec wins Sonora Rally. Photo: Sonora Rally
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Honda rider Ricky Brabec, who won a stage at this year’s Dakar Rally, has captured the victory in last week’s Sonora Rally, held March 21-24 in Sonora, Mexico.

He led all four of the special stages in a start-to-finish romp for victory.

Despite Joan Barreda and Steve Hengeveld’s injuries that ruled them out of the rally, Brabec still had to focus on the job at hand.

“You are really racing against yourself out here, against the terrain,” he said in a release.  “I’m much more familiar now with open up a course than I was back in January at Dakar when I had to do it for the first time.”

Fellow Honda riders Mark Samuels and Andrew Short completed the podium. Samuels won the Sonora Rally’s Dakar Challenge, which presents a free opportunity for a rider to enter the 2018 Dakar Rally.

“The hard work of getting to Dakar is still ahead of me, but I will do everything in my power to make America proud,” Samuels said.

Polaris ATR rider Dave Sykes won the UTV class, with Eric Pucelik and Mike Shirley winning the Cars class.

On background, the Sonora Rally is the only event of its kind in North America. The rally raid format requires street legal vehicles to transit along untimed “liaison” sections and timed “special stages” over multiple days, with the lowest combined time winning the event. Now in its third year, the Sonora Rally realizes the vision of founders Scott Whitney and Darren Skilton to bring a world class rally raid event to these shores (2016 recap).

Brabec’s winning ride is captured in the below video, via Race-Dezert.

Meanwhile, because photos do this event more justice than words do, those are below (All Photos: Sonora Rally)

Webber: Alonso may not see out the season with McLaren

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Mark Webber never had the easiest time in Formula 1, particularly his latter years as the number two driver at Red Bull Racing to Sebastian Vettel.

That being said, he was never on the verge of leaving it directly until he announced his plans to move to Porsche’s LMP1 Team, where he raced for three years from 2014 to 2016 before retiring at the end of last season.

But the Australian pondered whether Fernando Alonso might not be able to see out the season with McLaren Honda, if the team and manufacturer’s woes continue.

“Alonso may not stay with the team,” Webber told Belgian outlet Sporza. “Maybe Stoffel (Vandoorne) soon will have a new teammate.”

“I could see it happen that Alonso does not drive out the season. He is very frustrated. Fernando doesn’t start for a sixth or seventh place; he wants to fight for the podium.”

Webber added that for Vandoorne’s sake, starting in a team with lower expectations might not be the worst thing for him. It may allow the Belgian rookie to learn without extra pressure, since the onus is focused on the team.

For Alonso though, time is of the essence for what’s left of his career in F1. This is his last season under contract with McLaren Honda and he made no secret of his frustration for how well he drove at Melbourne, yet the car wasn’t up for it.

“Well the race was good, one of my best races driving like that,” Alonso told NBCSN post-race. “The car’s uncompetitive and to be close for a point was a nice surprise. It was good fuel saving as well. I was surprised to keep it in the points. A suspension (issue) stopped us from getting this point.

“I feel very well prepared, driving at the best of my career, and I’m fighting for one point. That’s disappointing and frustrating. But so long as I’m driving at my best, it’s a problem for the team… not me.”

Rosberg, Button soak up their first weekends out of F1 (PHOTOS)

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Since 2008, Lewis Hamilton and Sebastian Vettel have won seven World Championships. The two drivers that won titles in that period not named Lewis Hamilton and Sebastian Vettel – Nico Rosberg (2016) and Jenson Button (2009) – were both enjoying their first weekends not on a Formula 1 grid as full-time drivers for the first time in more than a decade this weekend as the 2017 season commenced at Melbourne’s Albert Park.

Rosberg made a visit to preseason testing in Barcelona a few weeks ago for his first appearance as spectator since winning the World Championship. But he watched from home this weekend with his family and posted a few thoughts during both qualifying and the race:

We’re now quite familiar with Rosberg’s home TV set and coffee table. This is the first time Rosberg has been out of an F1 race since 2005, the year he won the first GP2 championship.

Button meanwhile paid a visit to California for the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series weekend at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana… once he got off his couch. He checked in with seven-time champion Jimmie Johnson at Fontana.

Do you guys know if there's anything good to watch on tele this weekend? @storm_and_rogue_pomskies

A post shared by Jenson Button (@jensonbutton_22) on

Given McLaren Honda’s struggles, Button is probably smart to have got out when he did. He’d been on the grid since 2000, save for a couple races out in 2005 when BAR-Honda was barred from competing after being disqualified from the San Marino Grand Prix.

Meanwhile for Rosberg, he watched as Mercedes was unable to win the season opener for the first time since 2013.

DJR Team Penske wins three of four Supercars races at Melbourne

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DJR Team Penske has won its first Virgin Australia Supercars Championship races over the weekend during the Australian Grand Prix, with Scott McLaughlin and Fabian Coulthard taking the first three wins in the four-race, non-championship race weekend.

While Penske’s teams have long succeeded in North America and have had some international success, notably a Formula 1 win at the 1976 Austrian Grand Prix with John Watson, success has thus far eluded them since arriving in Supercars two years ago as majority shareholders of Dick Johnson Racing.

McLaughlin had the honor of beating Coulthard to the first win in race one of the weekend, before Coulthard doubled up with wins in races two and three. The first two races were one-two finishes, though, and McLaughlin said he’d received a text from Roger Penske in the wake of the victory.

“I got a text from Roger straight away and they’re all pretty happy,” McLaughlin told Supercars.com.

“They’re thanking me but I should be thanking them for giving me the opportunity.”

The first race was marred by this incident between Nick Percat and Lee Holdsworth, Percat having lost his brakes entering Turn 1 and crashing into Holdsworth, who was an innocent bystander.

But once the race resumed, McLaughlin held off Coulthard for the victory.

Coulthard led from start-to-finish in race two after his second straight pole position. He did the same in race three, albeit not in a Penske 1-2 as Jamie Whincup came second for Red Bull Holden Racing Team Commodore. McLaughlin was third.

A left-front puncture stopped Coulthard making it three in a row in the fourth race, and with steering damage, McLaughlin was resigned to 17th. Chaz Mostert took the win his Supercheap Ford, ending his own winless spell that dated to August of 2015.

Also of note from the weekend, ex-IndyCar driver Simona de Silvestro in her Team Harvey Norman Nissan Altima finished 13th in race one, her best finish yet in her first full season in the series.

The Supercars series is back in action at Symmons Plains Raceway on April 7-9.  Coulthard sits second in the series championship, 51 points back of Whincup’s teammate, Shane van Gisbergen.