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Motocross at SUGO

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The uphill of Sugo race track.

“Do you want to see motocross? And work a little?” That’s basically what me and my friends were asked by this friendly bar owner we met. It was a great opportunity to make friends and go to places we would have never gone by ourselves. I’m not exactly thrilled by motorcycles, so I don’t think I would ever pay to see such an event. Going there didn’t convince me otherwise, although I enjoyed my day at the race track.

It turned out the event was one the world championship race events (if I understood correctly), so it was quite an happening. All the pro teams were there with their trucks and stuff, which was cool to see. Our job was located at the actual race track: to clean the starting gates after each start, to make sure they work properly. Pretty easy work, although it got a bit repetitive in the end. Still, I enjoyed the whole experience a whole lot, and got to meet some nice people, too. Not to mention I got to practice my Japanese!

 

The riders were

The riders were concentrating really intensively before the start and the start was always the most exciting moment for me. The noise from the engines was really exhilarating, and I could feel it in my whole body.

Aaand the gates are open! I managed to take this shot just after the start. You can see some the tires are actually not even touching the ground.

Aaand the gates are open! I managed to take this shot just after the start. You can see some of the tires are actually not even touching the ground.

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And the race is on! We walked past the racers on the practice races, to send them off with a wave of the flag. It’s an intense moment.

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There were some really young riders competing as well. I heard some start racing as early as at the age of three or four, but the ones competing were maybe from eight years and up. Gravel was flying everywhere, so I had to keep my distance.

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I saw this one racer doing some gestures just before the start. I’m not sure what it’s all about, but I saw some other riders do it as well.

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Shot before the start. Team members (often parents or siblings) are holding the umbrellas. I’m not really sure why, but maybe to protect the riders from unnecessary heat because the day was quite hot. Another photographer is taking some shots before the race.

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Riders are concentrating before the start. A track marshal is watching that everything goes as is should.

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The support team has an important role as well.

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Before the race.

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Some actual motocross action!

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Watch the gravel fly.

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Final adjustments.

That’s it for motocross. I took hundreds of photos there, and got quite many keepers. It was a good opportunity to try some action photography.

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