July 16, 2017
Its a strange predicament, as the title suggests, bitter sweet. Photography is about capturing moments, recording history. The right place right time scenario occasionally presents itself and it should be grasped with caution. We had just arrived at Brands Hatch for a Sunday of the Historic Sports Car Club’s Legends of Brands Hatch Superprix. The Guards Trophy race had just started as we walked up Hailwoods Hill. I literally stopped, got my camera and turned around,took one test shot. The photos below were my second photo of the day onwards though the sequence. Right place right time. While the shock of what we’d seen set in, we waited as the marshals and emergency crew tended to the driver and cleared the remains of his Chevron B8 from the run off area at Paddock Hill Bend.
So what next, I didn’t want to post the photos up online without knowing the driver was ok and without his permission. I really felt I needed to get in touch with him as even if he didn’t want the photos posted he would probably want to see them himself. I didn’t know if anyone else had got the same shots, or if they had been captured on film anywhere. From the experience of having a couple of close friends crash their cars on track, once the dust settled they wanted to look at any available image of their particular incident.
Thankfully I was able to contact the driver Mark Colman through the Historic Sports Car Club (HSCC) to find that he had suffered a broken ankle and was back home recovering from an operation the day after the crash. A testament to the safety measures, chassis builders, roll cage welders, marshals, emergency teams. He was very interested to see the photos and fine with me posting them online.