The man in the shot below will start at the front of the 20-car grid for the 2018 Spanish Grand Prix.Lewis Hamilton is his name and while he is a talented driver he is quite tricky to photograph. I waited for some time for him to emerge from this motorhome and when he did, he covered his face with his hand (above). With a number of photographers and cameramen following him, he hightailed it through the paddock to a waiting car. Daniel Bois from Grand Prix Events snapped me snapping Lewis signing an autograph for a lucky fan as he moved with speed.And here is the shot from my camera. As I was walking with him I did notice that he was wearing one hell of a watch. I’m a watch man but I didn’t recognise this model but it had diamonds galore and looked sensational.When Daniel Ricciardo arrived, I asked him if he’d mind standing next to his caricature on the paddock entry wall for a pic but he was none to impressed with the portrait and politely declined. Lewis’ looked alright though.Brendon Hartley was all smiles as usual as he entered the track. He wasn’t so smiley after the first session due to a big crash into a tyre barrier which broke his car in half. Listening to the radio broadcast during qualifying there was talk he might lose his seat in the near future.
I can tell you that the signwriters had fixed up the embarrassing spelling error (Spainish) on the pit lane by the time the teams arrived for work.At the paddock entrance there was a band and a flamenco dancer adding to the colourful scene.Moving on to the racing action, I liked the Hola (translation: Hello) Barcelona sign at the back of this grandstand. In bright sun this is a much better shot but you shoot what you see and this is what I ended up with. I was chuffed to see Kimi’s car sparking when I reviewed the pic on my laptop. I had pit access in FP3 and focused on Red Bull and Ferrari drivers getting ready for the session in their garages. The garages are located next to each other and while shooting action in both I noticed that the drivers moisten their earpieces in the same way (a hot breath of moist air) before inserting them. It obviously helps in getting/keeping them in.Down at the Williams’ garage I got this funny look from driver Sergey Sirotkin as he attempted to ease himself into his car.There were some tight head shots of drivers waiting to go out for FP3. I caught Max Verstappen looking a little pained. And in qualifying, shot him as he rounded turn one. I love the sheer simplicity of this shot; nothing but tarmac and his Red Bull car. Back in pit lane cars came and went under cloudy skies.At 3pm qualifying commenced and for the first 15 minutes I shot from the pit lane exit using both long and short lenses.And then went to turns 1 and 5. Carlos Sainz had a grand stand full of fans at turn 5 where they went wild every time the Spaniard passed by.The drivers often practice their starts by pulling over to the right of the pit lane exit and launching their vehicles which Seb Vettel did here allowing me to get a tight head-on shot.After qualifying, the top three drivers Lewis Hamilton (1), Valtteri Bottas (2) and Seb Vettel (3) fronted up for the media conference. What was surprising was how jolly Lewis and Seb were; sharing a joke and enjoying the moment. I loved this shot of the smiling Deutschlander.That was my day and with a big crowd expected on race day I look forward to getting amongst the action for my 25th consecutive GP. Thanks for getting to the end.