Trackside Tuesday: The Setting Sun

04/29/2014 @ 12:24 pm, by Tony Goldsmith4 COMMENTS


Sometimes one or two photographs can rescue what would otherwise be a wasted session. That was exactly the situation recently when shooting the Moto2 warm up in Qatar.

Unlike the rest of the weekend the Moto2 warm up started in daylight. After a bit of deliberation I left the Media Center with the intention of taking a shuttle to the inside of Turn 2 as the low evening sun would be behind me.

I arrived at the shuttle point to see one leaving and with no others around and time running out I abandoned that plan, and instead I walked to the inside of Turn 1. This was far from ideal as I was shooting into the sun and I had already shot there.

What I hadn’t counted on was how quickly the sun set in Qatar and within a few minutes the sky was turning a beautiful shade of red. I hurried around to the outside of Turn 2, which gave me a shooting position into the setting sun. With my 500mm lens mounted on the camera, I shot a couple of laps before swapping to my 70-200mm lens for a wider perspective.

What started out looking like a wasted session ended up providing some of my favorite images of the weekend that could not be recreated at any other race on the MotoGP calendar.


Photos: © 2014 Tony Goldsmith / TGF Photos – All Rights Reserved

Tony Goldsmith is an Isle of Man based freelance motorcycle racing photographer, specialising in the Isle of Man TT races. He has also covered selected rounds of the British Superbike Championship and MotoGP. His online archive is available at and he can also be found on Facebook and Twitter.

Recently made redundant at his nine-to-five job, Tony is currently pursuing his lifelong dream of being a credentialed MotoGP photographer, and is now shooting the entire 2014 season. You can find his “Living the Dream” series that documents his GP journey, right here on Asphalt & Rubber.

  • L2C


  • I’d be pretty proud of those photos too Tony. Nice work!

  • As a cinematographer in Africa – I love shooting into the sun / using the flares and highlights and deep shadows. . Please post any really tight close up shots of the bikes, as well . these images are really lovely & show the atmosphere beautifully – it must have been a great session riding in that light and not easy!

  • Lovely work. And, yes, it really is stunning how quickly sunsets transpire as you get close to the equator!