TT Supporters Club
02nd May 2014 - 0 comments
I am pleased to announce that the TT Supporters Club have generously agreed to endorse my TT 2014 media accreditation.

I'd like to put on record my thanks to Graham Bean, editor of the TTSC magazine for his help in supporting my application.

I'd also like to thank everyone who has contacted me with offers of help or messages of support and encouragement.

Media Accreditation
24th April 2014 - 2 comments
With only 4 weeks to go I've discovered that I won't be able to take track-side photos at this years TT.

For the last 4 years I have had photo media accreditation at the TT on the strength of a letter of support from a competitor or team for whom I've agreed to supply photos.
This year the goal posts have shifted and it appears that rider support is not sufficient and that as a photographer you need to be endorsed by a recognised media outlet.

Unfortunately this presents a problem for me. As a freelance sports photographer I have never been directly tied to any newspaper or other media outlet, and have enjoyed the freedom to take photos pretty much as I please. I've supplied a great many photos to a great many riders and teams as well as selling prints to lots of race fan at a (very) modest profit. One consequence of my previously enjoyed freedom is that I do not have any useful contacts in any of the recognised bike related media outlets.

Speaking personally it's a shame as I really enjoy the excitement of road racing especially the TT. I try to convey that in the images I capture, but most of those images would just not be possible without the enhanced access to areas of the track that media accreditation facilitates.

However, with their new stricter requirements for accreditation I wonder whether the the organisers are missing a trick? Last year I published hundreds of my best TT images on Facebook and Flickr as well as my own website. These have been received really well and accrued a great many views. They've been shared and talked about around the world and stimulated plenty of positive feedback and debate. For the record (to date) Northline Photography has had 977k views on Flickr, 430k views on my own website and has amassed 988 followers on Facebook. In the digital age this is all very good PR for the premier road racing event on the planet.

Meanwhile with less than a month to go I am on the look-out for any and all offers of help with media accreditation.
Anyone with any helpful advice please contact me :

Photo Credit : Gary Harrison
Self Confidence
05th April 2014 - 0 comments
Michael Dunlop is a formidable road racer, of that there is no doubt. It seems he's not shy of a bit of self publicity either. He wants to set records apparently ... 6 TT wins in a week and 130mph lap on a 600cc supersport machine. No mean ambitions considering the 2014 TT has seen the highest quality of entries of established stars and upcoming talents for many a year.

To perform at the highest level in any sport you have to have a total belief in yourself and your abilities. This self confidence can sometimes be misunderstood and taken for arrogance. I don't think MD is arrogant but he sure has some hard fast riding to do if he is to realise his stated aims!
Start Numbers
21st March 2014 - 0 comments
TT 2014 start numbers have been issued and John McGuinness has reclaimed the honour of being first away down Bray Hill with the No 1 plate. Let's hope news of his recent wrist injury won't affect his usually blistering performance.

Full list of seeded top 20 solo's : 1 - John McGuinness; 2 - James Hillier; 3 - Ian Hutchinson; 4 - Guy Martin; 5 - Bruce Anstey; 6 - Michael Dunlop; 7 - Gary Johnson; 8 - William Dunlop; 9 - Michael Rutter; 10 - Conor Cummins; 11 - Dan Stewart; 12 - Dean Harrison; 13 - Lee Johnston; 14 - Josh Brookes; 15 - Steve Mercer; 16 - David Johnson; 17 - Dan Kneen; 18 - Simon Andrews; 19 - Cameron Donald; 20 - Ben Wylie.
Cameron Donald
19th March 2014 - 0 comments
I was worried that Cam Donald was going to be a no-show for TT 2014. Great news then that he's signed a 3 year contract to ride and develop the Norton race bike.

Norton have a very professional set-up and in hiring the talent of 2 time TT winner are obviously serious in their road racing ambitions. If the bike is competitive Cameron will be a front runner for sure and always a very exciting rider to watch. Good luck to them I say!
William Dunlop
11th March 2014 - 0 comments
Smart move by Tyco Suzuki to sign up Ballymoney road racer William Dunlop for the 2014 season.

A North West 200 and Ulster Grand Prix race winner, and a stellar performer at the TT.
He's always fast, always stylish and a definite photographers favourite.
Dan Cooper
07th March 2014 - 0 comments
Pleased to hear that talented road racer Dan Cooper has secured a good ride with Tsingtao WK Racing.

He's shown real promise on the roads in the last year or two with solid results last TT and a podium in the 2013 350 Classic TT.
Josh Brookes
28th February 2014 - 0 comments
It shouldn't really be possible. In fact, if I hadn't witnessed it with my own eyes I would cry foul. To be able to lap the mountain circuit in excess of 127mph is an amazing feat achieved by a select few. To perform at such a pace on your 1st visit to the TT is beyond unfeasible ... it just doesn't happen.

Until of course you factor in the prodigious talent and passion that brought Josh Brookes to try his hand at road racing. I can't tell you how pleased I am that he's back for another crack at the TT in 2014. The event's fastest ever newcomer, in theory, has nothing to prove ... but if last year is anything to go by, I bet he does.
Ian Hutchinson
27th February 2014 - 0 comments
TT 2014 is shaping up to be a barnstorming affair. It seems that SMR and the TT organisers have settled their argument over technical issues that threatened to see SMR sitting out this years event.

The announcement today that Ian Hutchinson will be on the grid in June is the best news I've heard all winter. He's a real contender, he has some business to finish and if he's fully fit will at the sharp end of the action for sure.
Self Promotion
27th February 2014 - 0 comments
Natural talent and fast lap times are all very well. But an increasingly important factor in being a successful racer is having the ability to effectively promote yourself on social media and of course to potential sponsors.

If you're local and feel I may be able to help with some promotion images please get in touch to see what we can do.
Michael Dunlop
17th February 2014 - 0 comments
Much anticipated, and long awaited, Michael Dunlop's plans for 2014 were finally announced this week. He's struck a deal with Mottorad BMW for the NW 200, IOMTT, UGP & Macau where he'll be riding a specially-built BMW S1000RR superbike.

The 2014 TT is a special event for BMW as it commemorates their first TT win which took place 75 years ago in 1939, and they are obviously very keen to put on a show.

Always a hard charger and exciting to watch, I personally can't wait to watch MD wringing the neck of a well sorted Beemer.
2014 Bring it on!
08th February 2014 - 0 comments
Well here we are in February and news of who is riding which machinery for who in 2014 is starting to be firmed up. Some disturbing potential absences though by way of Ian Hutchinson and Josh Brookes due to behind the scenes arguments between SMR and the TT organisers over technical regs. Another major potential disappointment will be the possible non-appearance of the very talented Michael Dunlop. Rumours abound about him taking a year out or maybe riding for BMW, but nothing as yet has been confirmed. Lets hope that a compromise can be reached that will allow Hutchy & Brookes to thrill us on the mountain circuit, and that MD makes an announcement soon.

Meanwhile my accreditation applications for the coming season are in and I'm awaiting confirmation of their approval. After such a long miserable winter I can't wait for the racing season to start!
TT 2009
25th January 2014 - 0 comments
TT 2009 was the first time I sat in the hedge with a camera and decided to have a crack at motorsports photography.
This was one shot that I was really pleased with and convinced me to take it a little more seriously and try to get press accreditation.
Needless to say I've put on my 'tog' bib and sat in plenty of 'restricted' hedges since and enjoyed getting close to the action.

However, this shot was taken from the public viewing area and goes to show you don't have to have preferred access to capture your heroes.
Accreditation permitting, 2014 will be be my 4th successive year watching the TT through a lens and I really can't wait for the weather to improve and the action to start.