August 10, 2006

Back to Pocono Raceway, how not to shoot track video...

...OK lesson learned: if you want to end up with good video DON'T go out on the track first and drive fast! Nothing's more boring than an empty track, it's better to drive slow and let people pass and pass them back. All things I did not do at last weeks Motorsport NE/PDA track day on the Pocono North course.
When I got home and looked at the video...well, it sucked. I got lazy with the productions...I'm firing myself!
No worries though, I called in the cavalry. Stee, before he managed to overheat his M3, secured some great footage of the MCoupe from behind and one of our favorite automotive photographers, Robert Plafta, was there doing his thing.
If you want to see some excellent car images look at his galleries, if you need some work done he might be the photographer for you.

Back to the Video. I noticed doing this that some of the best footage for editing is not necessarily the one with the smoothest driving. On the first shot of the M Coupe from behind I am all over the place and the lap time was slow but the video looks fast. Will have to keep that in mind too for the future.

On a more technical angle I found that I was actually faster downshifting less, not going down to second gear in the tight corners was good for .5sec contrary to you would imagine. Yes, the engine does not push as hard between 3500 and 4000rpm as it does above 5k, but I lost time shifting. One of the reasons is that the transmission has gotten very stiff and imprecise so I need to take my time or risk a catastrophe. I'm guessing this is because it still has the BMW "lifetime" fluid in it and the transmission mounts are deflecting under load. This week the MC is getting new fluid for the transmission and differential as well as some Rogue Engineering stiffer mounts. We'll see next week if it makes a difference or if my next car will have SMG or DSG.

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