The 2011 Tour de France

Shortly after we moved to France we cycled to see Le Tour pass through St Juire Champgillon.

There was a great atmosphere when we arrived and the crowds grew steadily as we waited, first to appear were the escorting Gendarmes followed by support vehicles crammed with bikes.

For more information on 2018 Tour de France see Le Tour
Also 2018 Tour de France Grand Depart 07/07/2018 Noirmoutier to Fontenay Le Comte – 189Km.

All shot with a Nikon D300 with 70-300mm F4.5-5.6 lens.
Love this shot, even though off focus, it conveys the long awaited appearance of the tour. Zoom to the reflection in the sunglasses.

Closely followed by the carnival parade of vehicles and assorted publicity floats,
Where do I apply for this job?

Pretty girls distributing sweets,

Looks like Michelin man

An ever growing crowd and sense of anticipation, even the gendarmes were smiling…
Or just wind?

The sound of helicopters pronounced the arrival of 3 breakaway lead cyclists along with a burst of frenzied cheering from the crowd:

Closely followed by the peloton in hot pursuit:

The crowd go crazy cheering, yelling: allez, allez, allez…

The streets crammed with cyclists at terrific speed

Then more support vehicles

And thats it till next year

Speed up your Nikon camera for action shots: Applies to most DSLRs.
The cyclists pass you in around 20-30 seconds, therefore speed is essential. Consider the following:
1. Use a battery grip – they generally add 1 or 2 fps, that doesn’t sound much but over 10 bursts of 5 shots or 10 bursts of 7 shots provides an increase of 20 total and hopefully more ‘keepers’.
2. Check you cameras memory speed the faster your camera writes to memory, the quicker the buffer empties ready for the next burst. Sandisk & Lexar are leading brands whose 95Mb/s SD cards & high speed flash really are worth it.
3. If you shoot raw on a 24Mp camera, a 6000 x 4000 14bit large image is around 26Mb. Consider shooting smaller images or even jpegs if the levels of PP will be minimal. If raw is essential then using 12bit instead of 14bit will provide more continuous shots.
4. Turn off the following settings in photo shooting menu, unless needed:

    Auto Distortion Control – only works with jpgs on Nikon anyway
    Long Exposure NR – noise reduction
    Auto ISO sensitivity

All impact on continuous frame rate when switched on.
Now press the shutter half way, observe the top display on the right an r with a number ie: r12 which is the number of continuous shots,
Experiment and test your set-up before you use it,
D7100 or D750 owners might like to save the setup to U1 or U2 for instant recall.

Focus: I set my autofocus to AF-C continuous with either 9 point dynamic area or Single. Group area may work to get a lock on the front runners.
Consider back button auto-focus using the AE-L/AF-L button so focussing is removed from the shutter release.
Finally, dont forget to select continuous high CH on the rotary selector et bon courage.

Any suggestions welcome, please comment & thanks for reading.

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