Ironman – It’s all about the shirt – Hump Day Photo Story

Aloha Hump Day,

One year I was privileged to shoot for the  Gatorade Corp. The first image was their favorite shot of all, it wasn’t planned or posed in any way. I shot another 50 rolls after this image was taken over the next 15 hours. “If I had only known”. I think it shows how many volunteers  it takes just to get the “Ironletes” on to the race course. The next year all the shirts had Ironman printed on the back.

ironman world championship kona hawaii

   There is an unexplainable “high” to being up front  shooting the Ironman World Championships. Once upon a time I was right there as the Official Ironman Photographer, but this wide angle shot is from the very top of the Press bleachers looking down at 20,000 spectators, volunteers and press all looking in anticipation for the winner.

What a great bunch of global photo characters crammed up there, everyone hanging out getting along talking photography, sharing shaved ices and camera tricks….NOT! It is war.

With my small lens & camera,  I always felt like the local kid fighting for Kona, like in the movies “Breaking Away” & “Rocky”.

So one year CPS – Canon Professional Services loans me one of those big white Canon 600mm L  lens just like the big boys use, so for safe keeping I stored it at my friends flower shop next to the finish line, that way I wouldn’t have to lug it around like the other guys; Helps to be connected I bragged in my mind.

After a long day of shooting it was handed up to me in the bleachers, it instantly & completely frosted cold from one end to the other, just like in a Sci-Fi movie.  This big beautiful Canon Professional lens steaming like a white ice sculpture against the blue Kona sky.

I would have no killer photos published of winners on this hot October day with this lens but I did get huge belly laughs from all the photojournalists packed around me.

Giving us all a lessen in photo life; don’t try to be too cool – you might get frosted.

Lucky for me – before Facebook.

Happy Aloha Hump Day.

The Baldwins

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