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01-18-2012, 09:28 AM   #1
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What to take to the INDY 500!!!

Okay so my wonderful wife surprised me with a trip to the INDY 500 for my 50th.....

We are sitting in the S.W. Vista Section supposed to be where all the crashes happen!!

We have all day passes for the pits and activites on Saturday and then the race on Sunday.

So my question is what lenses would be best suited for this having never been to something like this?? I tend to over pack and take way too much maybe using a 1/4 of what I brought.

Does anyone have any suggestions or recommendations.

Also can you bring a tripod to an event like this??
I was thinking that if a regular tripod is not allowed maybe the Manfrotto Monopod Model with the three small feet might be ok....thoughts.

Any help suggestions greatly appreciated.


01-18-2012, 09:33 AM   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by stl09 Quote
Okay so my wonderful wife surprised me with a trip to the INDY 500 for my 50th
Congrats!!!!

QuoteOriginally posted by stl09 Quote
So my question is what lenses would be best suited for this having never been to something like this?? I tend to over pack and take way too much maybe using a 1/4 of what I brought.

Without a doubt, a must is your 10~17 FE - you have to get a good crowd and track shot (or a few of them) and that is the lens for it. For your zoom, the bigma has the perfect range but it depends on how light you want to pack.

As for the tripod, 99% of the time they are not allowed, the monopod should be allowed...
01-18-2012, 09:47 AM   #3
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When I attend Nascar races I tape a point and shoot that will fit in my shirt pocket.
Jake
01-18-2012, 10:17 AM   #4
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Where in the SW vista will you be sitting?

Actually after the start of the race, most accidents happen at the north end of the track. Turn three and four.

Advantage to the SW Vista is you will be able to catch the cars comming out of the pits and going through turn 1.

As to what to take, if you don't already have one, get a couple of camelbak water backpacks. You will be right in the sun and you will need plenty of water. You will also need a good hat too.

Now what to carry with you. DO NOT CARRY YOUR BAG ON SUNDAY. All bags have to be searched going into the gates. Just carry what you can put in a pocket or on the camera. 70-210 or 50-500 would be the lenses of choice. 50-500 would be a beast in the stands without a tripod or mono pod so I would go 70-210.

You could get the monopod in but I feel it would be hinderice with the amount of people that will be there. The seats are not very wide there and people will be moving in and out so you will be up and down as people pass by you and as people stand up to see what is going on.

To give you an idea of what you will be seeing, here is a picture I took in 2009 on a qualifing day. Taken from the grandstands on the frontstrech with the garages behind me. That car was running around 230 mph at that point on the track.

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01-18-2012, 10:25 AM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by stl09 Quote
Okay so my wonderful wife surprised me with a trip to the INDY 500 for my 50th.....
Congratulations on finally achieving your majority!

Here's a link to the Hospitality Brochure - 17Mb. Should have all the "Rules" but it was too big to download timely at work. Email the ombudsman about "Professional" cameras. A friend tells me Indy is jealous of its ownership of images of its "properties" during the 500. They believe ownership includes anything physically inside the gate whether staionary or moving, whether they actually own it or not. Maybe for once you can say, "Its just a Pentax, not a Nikon."

You'll need 2 small kits - one for the pits day and another for the stands day. Take one cross-over lens from the pits kit to capture crowd action in the stands.

Beer is expensive. And not conducive to SR.
01-18-2012, 10:33 AM   #6
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I also forgot in my last post to tell you to get parking before going for the weekend.

Parking and Tailgating - Indianapolis Motor Speedway

Get your parking in the Main Gate parking area. It is right across 16th street from the SW Vista. When you buy it, the moter speedway will also give you directions on how to get to that parking lot. For the main gate parking or Lot 3 (which is my other suggestion for parking) you will need to come from east of the track on 16th street and stay on the inside lane so you can turn left into the parking.

Also I have never had a problem getting any camera into the grounds of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
01-18-2012, 12:59 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by joe.penn Quote
Congrats!!!!




Without a doubt, a must is your 10~17 FE - you have to get a good crowd and track shot (or a few of them) and that is the lens for it. For your zoom, the bigma has the perfect range but it depends on how light you want to pack.

As for the tripod, 99% of the time they are not allowed, the monopod should be allowed...
Wow...the 10-17 would not of been that I would even considered for this. The bigma I had considered but it gets so heavy after awhile which is why I was wondering if tripods were allowed. Even the monopod would help and let the weight rest on it.
Thanks for suggestions....
01-18-2012, 01:08 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by bigdavephoto Quote
Where in the SW vista will you be sitting?

Actually after the start of the race, most accidents happen at the north end of the track. Turn three and four.

Advantage to the SW Vista is you will be able to catch the cars comming out of the pits and going through turn 1.

As to what to take, if you don't already have one, get a couple of camelbak water backpacks. You will be right in the sun and you will need plenty of water. You will also need a good hat too.

Now what to carry with you. DO NOT CARRY YOUR BAG ON SUNDAY. All bags have to be searched going into the gates. Just carry what you can put in a pocket or on the camera. 70-210 or 50-500 would be the lenses of choice. 50-500 would be a beast in the stands without a tripod or mono pod so I would go 70-210.

You could get the monopod in but I feel it would be hinderice with the amount of people that will be there. The seats are not very wide there and people will be moving in and out so you will be up and down as people pass by you and as people stand up to see what is going on.

To give you an idea of what you will be seeing, here is a picture I took in 2009 on a qualifing day. Taken from the grandstands on the frontstrech with the garages behind me. That car was running around 230 mph at that point on the track.
She has not told exactly where yet but were supposed to be in the first rows I think.
Already figured on hats, water, and we were told really good ear plugs!!!
So now for the important thing what did you use for that photo....that is what I'm hoping to come home with!!! Lens. settings, exposure, etc.

Good point on the bag issue...which is why I figured I would just walk in with what I thought I would need.

I was considering the bigma but it is such a beast to lug around without a tripod but yet it's such a capable lens. I figured there would be a lot of people coming and going which is why I thought the monopod might be workable and still deal with the people.
I do appreciate your suggestions and if you have a chance let me know what you used and the settings for the photo....just amazing clairity.

01-18-2012, 01:13 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by bigdavephoto Quote
I also forgot in my last post to tell you to get parking before going for the weekend.

Parking and Tailgating - Indianapolis Motor Speedway

Get your parking in the Main Gate parking area. It is right across 16th street from the SW Vista. When you buy it, the moter speedway will also give you directions on how to get to that parking lot. For the main gate parking or Lot 3 (which is my other suggestion for parking) you will need to come from east of the track on 16th street and stay on the inside lane so you can turn left into the parking.

Also I have never had a problem getting any camera into the grounds of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
My understanding is when she called to order they suggested parking to make things smoother. The person she spoke to was very helpful with ideas and pointers. I'm not sure where we are parking but the area you mention sounds similar to what she was told on the phone. The package with everything has not arrived yet so I don't have exact details yet.
Thanks
01-18-2012, 01:45 PM   #10
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If you will be down low in the stands this is what you will be getting into.

These were taken in turn three NE Vista, I was on row c. As you can see, catch fence will be in the way. The higher up you go the better you will be.

The other picture I posted. 1st DL, Tamron 28-200mm shot at 200mm, 1/500th, used moving object mode, center weighted metering, Iso 200, Contunious autofocus, center spot autofocus, single frame. I was hand holding and carried through my panning. ( I still was watching the car through the view finder after I took the picture.)
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01-18-2012, 02:17 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by monochrome Quote
Congratulations on finally achieving your majority!

Here's a link to the Hospitality Brochure - 17Mb. Should have all the "Rules" but it was too big to download timely at work. Email the ombudsman about "Professional" cameras. A friend tells me Indy is jealous of its ownership of images of its "properties" during the 500. They believe ownership includes anything physically inside the gate whether staionary or moving, whether they actually own it or not. Maybe for once you can say, "Its just a Pentax, not a Nikon."

You'll need 2 small kits - one for the pits day and another for the stands day. Take one cross-over lens from the pits kit to capture crowd action in the stands.

Beer is expensive. And not conducive to SR.
QuoteOriginally posted by bigdavephoto Quote
I also forgot in my last post to tell you to get parking before going for the weekend.

Parking and Tailgating - Indianapolis Motor Speedway

Get your parking in the Main Gate parking area. It is right across 16th street from the SW Vista. When you buy it, the moter speedway will also give you directions on how to get to that parking lot. For the main gate parking or Lot 3 (which is my other suggestion for parking) you will need to come from east of the track on 16th street and stay on the inside lane so you can turn left into the parking.

Also I have never had a problem getting any camera into the grounds of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
I defer my hearsay to your actual experience.
01-18-2012, 02:30 PM   #12
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Yeah...I've spent enough time out at the speedway I kinda know it like the back of my hand.

About the only thing I haven't been out there for yet are the motocycles.

But of course this year Nascar will also run the Grand Nationals on Satuarday and American Grand Prix (Grand Am) on Friday.

Come to think about it, I haven't attended the Satuarday race in May Either (I think it's called the american 100).
01-19-2012, 06:03 PM   #13
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Did some digging and found some pictures that were taken from either SW Vista or the South Vista. Was sitting about row M or a little higher, don't really remember. Used my A3000 with a 70-210. My guess on the shutter would be 1/250 or faster.
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01-21-2012, 08:12 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by monochrome Quote
Congratulations on finally achieving your majority!

Here's a link to the Hospitality Brochure - 17Mb. Should have all the "Rules" but it was too big to download timely at work. Email the ombudsman about "Professional" cameras. A friend tells me Indy is jealous of its ownership of images of its "properties" during the 500. They believe ownership includes anything physically inside the gate whether staionary or moving, whether they actually own it or not. Maybe for once you can say, "Its just a Pentax, not a Nikon."

You'll need 2 small kits - one for the pits day and another for the stands day. Take one cross-over lens from the pits kit to capture crowd action in the stands.

Beer is expensive. And not conducive to SR.
F1 does it and gets away with it, i suppose other sports will follow suit. Nowadays, DSLRs are so affordable even soccer moms can afford them so i do believe there will come a time even during an event where its not allowed to bring cameras in or that any photo or video taken during and within the premises or even a picture of the premises in the background during the event automatically becomes their property when you buy their ticket.
01-21-2012, 07:30 PM   #15
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I don't think that they could actually enforce a no camera rule during the Indy 500, Brickyard 400 and the Red Bull Moto GP with out completly fowling up parking big time. At the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, they park around 5000 to 10000 cars in the infield and what is called the north forty which is an open field between the north end of the track and 30th street.

To enforce a no camera rule they would have to search all the cars going into the speedway which would take to much time, plus not to metion the fact that most cell phones now days have cameras that are not that bad. Granted not as good as a DSLR with a 70-300mm zoom but still not that bad.
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