After spending the day shooting on the starting line yesterday I decided it was time for mt first day of top end shooting for the 2013 NHRA season.
In the second pair of funny cars I would be in the perfect spot to shoot an incredible 300mph explosion.
Two time NHRA funny car champion Tony Pedregon would be lined up alongside Todd Lesenko.
Right at the green, Lesenko would get way sideways as he smoked the tires. He would wisely get off the throttle.
In the right lane, Tony Pedregon would race down track.
Nearing halftrack, his unhappy engine started spitting out ragged flames from the headers. This is almost always a sign of bad things to come.
As soon as I saw the odd flame pattern from his headers I held down the button on the 12 frame per second Canon 1Dx I was shooting with.
It didn’t take more than about two shots before the engine let go in a massive fireball…
The force of the explosion would bow the body of Pedregons Toyota Camry body. Thats all that was needed for the 300mph air to get beneath the body…
And quickly lift the 50 thousand dollar carbon fiber body off the chassis.
At this point the body is nearly 90 degrees coming off the car. Note the heat waves surrounding the body of the car as it takes off…
The body coming off the car automatically pulls the parachutes out. Sounds like some technical parachute ejection system but actually all that it is is the parachutes are mounted to the body. When the body flies off the parachutes, which are connected to the chassis, are simply pulled out and opened by the air.
I tried to quickly find the body flying through the air to get a cool photo but I failed and didn’t find it quick enough so back to the car I would aim.
Pedregon would get the car way sideways during his efforts to bring the car to a stop.
I’m sure oil all over his visor and tires didn’t help his cause.
Tony would bring the car to a safe stop and climb from the remains of his car uninjured.
Tony has a backup body so he will undoubtedly be back out there tomorrow.
Hopefully with better results!
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