Category Archives: Action

Balloon Madness 2014

Every year or so. I try to attend the Sonoma County Hot Air Balloon Classic in Windsor. When I can get up early enough, I try to get to the launch of the ‘dawn patrol’ group (around ‘O’ dark 5am something or other) because the flames from the balloons and lighting (blue hour stuff) of the balloons is – to me – the best photography this event has to offer. Fog and wind can screw up this event but fortunately I’ve been luck more often than not. Here are a few image from the event.

Dawn Patrol with running lights.
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Opening Day of the 34th America’s Cup

Returning back to the story…September 7, 2013 was the day set for the start of the actual America’s Cup races. All before were to determine the challenger. This privilege was won by Emirates Team New Zealand (Kiwis). The defender – Oracle Team USA (Oracle), had been racing against itself as they had two boats but while many had opinions, no one really knew who was going to be the better or faster boat – the Kiwis or Oracle. So today was the day when the world would find this out. Knowing all of this, I had to go and watch and well take a few photos too 😉 .

The race format is a best of 17 series with 2 races per day and some day’s off. Given that in the challenger series wind limits (too high or to low) caused postponement of some races, we could hope for two races per day but were unsure if we’d see them. So…off to the races!

#17 Before the race looking at an AC45 (foot) cat used for a series of races in 2011 and 2012 leading up to the AC34.
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#18 Larry Ellison’s little Yacht – He owns Oracle and a few other billion dollars
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