Early on Friday morning, I attended the beginning of the construction of the street course that is annually built on the streets of St Pete for the Honda Grand Prix.
These massive wall pieces weight 12,000 pounds each! They will make up the safety wall of the track. The track is put together piece by piece, with interlocking parts almost like a very large set of Legos.
On hand for the event were Honda Grand Prix President, Tim Ramsberger, and Dragon Racing driver, Sébastien Bourdais. Everything was happening so quickly with shooting the cars and people that I looked down to check my shots and lost track of where everyone was at for a moment, then stopped and wondered where Mr Bourdais had gone and there he was, right next to me. Before I got to introduce myself, he was off to do some interviews and I was off to shoot some more photos.
Volunteers Ed and C.J. also brought out two IndyCar show cars. One, which is the older version of the type used prior to last year, was formerly driven by Tony Kanaan but was decommissioned after an accident that tore the monocoque.
The other, newer Dalara produced body, was built from the beginning to be a show car, never having had a wheel turned in anger.
Both cars were quite an unusual and incredible sight sitting there on the city street, open to passers by. I remember a young boy going up to look at them but being a bit apprehensive about getting close enough to have a photo made with one of them. It was too cute.
I hope to get to shoot on the other side of the fence this year for the Honda Grand Prix, but this was a nice taste of the excitement and a great reason to get up early on a Saturday morning.
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Full disclaimer: I wrote this post of my own volition. All views expressed here are my own, and do not necessarily represent the views of IZOD, IndyCar, or Honda Grand Prix.