That’s it. That’s a wrap on La Vuelta 2018 and on the Grand Tour season.
Let’s looks at a few facts and figures on covering all three grand tours in one year. It equates to 70 days on the road, 15,0000 kilometers of driving, and over of 120,000 images to sort and edit.
What’s it like being a photographer covering the World Tour? A typical day starts around mid morning with rider sign on. Teams normally arrive ninety minutes before the race start. A small huddle of photographers normally gathers around the sign-on podium to discuss tactics for the day.
We consult the road book--a publication given to everyone working on the race. It covers the route of each stage in minute detail. From this, we can plan a route, allowing us to see the race as many times as possible. Using backroads and shortcuts, we can leap frogg the peloton. Normally on a stage race, we can capture two to three stops plus the finish. Some days more, some days less.
Once the race is over, it’s off to the finish-line press room to edit and send images. On an average stage, I take around 2,000 shots, which need to be edited and sent out to clients. This normally takes two to three hours, so with races finishing around 6pm, photographers are not leaving the press room until 9pm.
After another glance at the road book to find the start of the next day’s stage, it’s normally an hour drive to the night’s accommodation. Once at the hotel, it’s time to grab some food (if anywhere is still open), then book another hotel for the next day, then to bed before it all starts again the next day.
Words & Images: Chris Auld
For the best of NZ Cycling Journal, subscribe to our print edition.