Among the huge tank of drift photos I have from over the years, there are a few I’m very proud of. Usually, I love looking at them when I come across them, but can’t help but point flaws out and always wish I’d had a better camera. A few month ago, I had the chance to shoot with some pro-level gear, and had the right subjects at Willow Springs’ Horse Thief Mile.
- Car(s): Lexus IS300 Drift Spec
- Location: Willow Springs Raceway, Horse Thief Mile, Rosamond, CA
- Photog: Chris Rosales (IG + Twit @Chrishasacamera)
- Camera: Canon 7D Mark II w/ Canon 300mm f/2.8L
A lot of my early drifting efforts were shot with real sketchy gear. I shot my first drift events with a Canon Rebel XTi, and moved into a very nice 70D a few years in. It wasn’t until two years ago that I could invest in bigtime glass, but that was still too late to catch my short career shooting pro drifting.
At Formula D Long Beach 2016, I had my 70D and a cheapo 70-300mm lens that had the AF select panel broken off, so I taped the gaping hole up with office tape. I actually got roasted at the track for the shabbiness of my gear, though my photos were quite nice. Since then, I made a point of scraping up money to rent gear until I could buy The Good Stuff outright.
Fast forward to February 2021, I had a 7D Mark II and 300mm f/2.8 telephoto prime in hand. The drifters were out at HTM. I worked a full day shooting a track day before that, but the allure was too great and I dragged myself up to get the shots I envisioned for years. Turns out, I was warmed up, focused, and ready. Here’s one of those shots, as big as we could get it: