Tag Archives: Come Drive With Us ’18

IFMAR Worlds Edit – Day 129

The Widdow Maker

OK, I’m a bit late with the release. I know. I suck.

So usually I can hammer out a script for a CDWU episode in a week or two. For some reason, this one has been difficult, and I’ve actually been working on it for 4 weeks. I’ve had worse things happen; The AXIALFEST movie I actually ended up nearly starting completely over as I just wasn’t happy with how the first cut flowed. In the end, it’s one of my favorite episodes.

The most time consuming process has been fact checking. This is the part that I really wish I had a research department for. It’s tedious work and is often over-looked…and I had quite a few facts to check in this one 😉

I feel that the other reason that this script has taken longer than usual is that there were more than a few contentious issues that I wanted to cover the best way I could. There’s never a shortage of great stories at an IFMAR event, and that’s what I like so much about IFMAR!

  • The Flies
  • Consistency of the Watering
  • Maifield’s Motor Selection
  • Tire selection for the main final
  • Post-Final Gyro Tech
  • Impact of RCGP on IFMAR – Undecided if I really need to cover this so it may end up on the cutting room floor
  • The first worlds without Dallas Mathiesen at the helm
  • The length of the event and seemingly endless qualifying

This is a lot of story for a single episode and several of these topics are difficult to cover and fact-checking some of them has been an interesting process. I always try my best to tell the true behind-the-scenes stories and in the past, telling the truth has caused some issues for both myself and my co-producer Todd. #axiafest #brianparker

It’s always a juggling act with revealing the story behind the headlines; sometime manufacturers just don’t like the facts publicized. I fear that this episode just might ruffle a few feathers, but it’s a compelling story and I’m telling it in the most respectable way I can.

Minus a few tweaks here and there, the script is done, and IMO it’s one of the best ones I have written. This is going to be a great episode, and probably the longest one. Right now the edit is at 1:40…I would like to trim 10 minutes, but that would mean dropping one of the drivers I am featuring and I really don’t want to do that…but I might have to. There is always the directors cut at a future date right?

When is it gonna drop???

I shipped my audio equipment to Mike Garrison this past weekend, and depending on his schedule, I am hoping to record him next week.

So when is the release you ask? I’m going to take a page out of the Team Associated Play book…

TWO MORE WEEKS!

IFMAR Worlds Edit – Day 88

The Home Stretch

I have the first cut done!!!

This cut doesn’t include the Narration and the sound-mix isn’t quite completed nor is the color correction & grading. But this cut does help me get finalize the story and gives me a really good sense as to how well it flows.

I watched the cut last night and really liked the stories & people that I followed at this event. It’s shaping up to be one of my favorite episodes and which is good; because I was very nervous going into this event. More on that in a bit.

The next phase will be the script. I’ve talked about this in the past, and I still don’t know if my approach is widely used or even accepted. The edit is very close to where it will be come the final release and I don’t have a script yet. I haven’t even started it yet. While I edit, I basically visualize what the talking points will be and I have a good sense of how much time it will take to get my point across.

The script usually takes a week to write and sometimes it ends up in some changes to the edit, but I should be in a position to record the Narration mid-May. I haven’t set a release date but I believe that the week of May 27th will be when this one drops.

The Voice

Charlie was the perfect voice for the Silver State II movie. He’s exactly what I wanted for that episode; hence the change. IFMAR is a different type of event though. It’s less of a party and much more serious; Silver State was one of the most laid-back races I’ve ever gone to since I began filming “Come Drive With Us” in 2014. Not that there wasn’t fun being had in Perth, but it’s just different type of Movie. IFMAR events are much more serious; and the emotions and drama run a lot higher at an IFMAR event vs. a race like Silver State.

I’m happy to announce that my good friend Mike Garrison will be voicing this episode.

What’s next?

I currently have 3 productions queued up. JBRL, DNC II, an RC Cribs & the Ice Breaker. There is one small issue; well to me it’s a significant one.

I chase perfection. I’m probably my own worst critic. For JBRL, I decided to shoot 3 seperate JBRL events: Palm Desert, Thunder Alley & Revelation. The theme I was going with wsa “The Good. The Bad. The Ugly”. This is no small undertaking especially for a one-man crew. The first shoot at Palm Desert (The Bad) went quite well. There was lots of emotion (Wickham); the race was exciting, and I was really happy with the content.

The next shoot, which was absolutely critical to the production was at Thunder Alley (The Good). The weather was great; the characters at this event were on point, there was just one issue. My dad passed away just a few days prior to this event. I was going to cancel the shoot, but because it was a critical piece to the JBRL story; I thought I would be fine.

I was not.

Filming an episode of CDWU requires me to be extremely focused. I have to ensure that I’m following my stories effectively, and I wasn’t able to do this. I didn’t successfully capture the stories of this event. While my focus was better at Revelation (The Ugly) for the final race in the episode, I just didn’t really capture either of these events to the level of perfection that I feel I needed to.

At this point, I’m not convinced that the JBRL content is up to my standards to be released as part of the “Come Drive With Us” series. This is very disappointing to me as I was really excited about this episode. But with what I view as only 1 successful shoot it might be difficult to tell this story. I will be looking at the content after the IFMAR movie is done, but I’m just not totally convinced that there is a compelling story to tell here. It has nothing at all to do with Jimmy or his series; this is purely on me.

Or maybe I’m just over-reacting and the content is great; but I wanted to be transparent as my next episode may end up being DNC II.

I hope to see many of you at the Silver State Race next week (especially Mark Stanta Maria)! I won’t be filming (I don’t do re-runs); I will be racing!!!

IFMAR Worlds Edit – Day 72

Well it’s been an eventful couple weeks. I’m actually writing this while at yet another race! This time, I’m not filming…well…that’s a lie…I always film something when I’m at an R/C Car Race. Anyways, I am more participant than filmmaker at this one. As far as filming goes, I will be shooting what is affectionately referred to as “B-Roll”. This is supplementary footage that I will use at some point. I just don’t know what that point is. It will most likely go into the intro of the Brazil Worlds movie (If I decide to go). I got some really great footage this weekend, but nothing beats the scene of Britani Toszer and her swear jar. She made over $160 in just 3 days! I had to make more than a few contributions this weekend 🙁

I need to stop getting so fired up at these races!!!

The race that I am at is the 2019 Big-Barn Race in Chilliwack, British Columbia. This was my first time on the track with my new XRAY Nitro & Electric Buggy. Seriously though…XRAY, why would you put Blue air-filter oil in an eBuggy kit??? All my screws fell out!!!!!

I digress.

Both buggies broke-in quickly and were instantly competitive. Which was a good thing because the competition was very stiff here. I struggled with squid drivers in 40+ & in eBuggy and ended up 8th over-all in 40+ (should have been 7th but some guy ran out of talent and hacked me out). The quality of drivers in the open class was far better, but because of some costly mistakes in the B-Main I missed the bump by 1 position and ended up 19th in the class. I also struggled with traffic in eBuggy and finished in 30th or so. The race was a blast, but the lack of sportsmanship was pretty extreme. This was my first indoor Nitro race in at least 15 years; there was a lot to learn about tires & saucing, but I’m pretty happy with my results. As many tires as I packed, I didn’t bring any Pro-Line Slidelock’s and they ended up being the tire to have. I had to borrow some…but they were mounted onto white wheels 🙁

This year I will be doing a lot of indoor racing. I’ll be attending Silver State as well as the Southern Nationals. Speaking of Indoor races, I just got back from one that was real decent…

The Ice Breaker

First off, I want to give a HUGE shout out to Peter Husser & Indy RC World 2.0. They treated me awesome…thank you so much for everything you helped me with ranging from feeding me to turning off the music in the pits (YouTube’s fault)! This event was pretty darn good; the track was fun and had a nice flow to it; I did a few laps with Adam Drake’s eBuggy. Incidentally, it took Mark Santa Maria 2 days to beat my hero lap from my 5 minute practice session. Shit. He is going to be on a mission at Silver State.

Peter Husser working hard to make the track the best it can be

The Venue was really good; the air quality was amazing for a small indoor venue; a testament to the ventilation system. The organization was top-notch and they ran a smooth racing program. I was impressed by everything. The vibe at Ice Breaker was very similar to SoNats; laid back and not a lot of pressure. The all night practice was also a big hit. This is definitely a race to put onto your bucket lists. Rumors are that this is the last Ice Breaker held at Indy RC; they want to move this race to a larger venue. Personally, I think this would be a mistake. I loved the ambiance at IRCW; sure it’s small, but that just puts everyone closer together and makes us feel more like good friends instead of strangers. I would maybe suggest just capping the entries to something in the 350 range instead of moving the Ice Breaker to an arena? Plus, there are so many arena events already… just my thoughts; the event was a ton of fun as is.

The Calcutta

Pain. Lots of pain.

I’m not going to explain in detail what this is; this has been done already. If you need to know what it is before continuing you can just google it; but this was the first time I’ve seen this at an RC race. For me as the producer of a doc the Calcutta was awesome. It injected a ton of fun into the production and makes for some really good (positive) drama. Especially
Maher Ouda, who put 2,000 cash bucks on Adam Drake Winning Truggy. The only thing more exciting than the actual bidding war was when I was standing 8 feet away from Maher (just out of punching/strangulation range) when Adam broke in the closing minutes of the Truggy final. Classic scene of anguish! Adversely, Mark Santa Maria of “On the Tone” fame made out pretty good. He had formed a bidding posse end they won the bids for Joe Bornhorst & Jared Tebo. Joe went for the bargain basement price of $600; both Joe would win the Truggy main and Jared, after having technical issues in the Truggy main, would go on to win the Buggy class. Each member of Mark’s group walked away with around $1,000!

Mark Santa Maria after Joe & Jared won their A-Mains.

As an enthusiast of R/C I’m not sold on Gambling at RC races. Sure it’s exciting, but is it a precedent that we want to set? In the end, it was seemed to be a big draw; so if that’s what it takes to make our sport exciting so be it. I’ll guess I can support it.

Lots and lots of Editing…

After DNC & the Ice Breaker my backlog is significant at this point; but I think this is the release schedule that I’m aiming for:

Come Drive With Us – Perth Worlds: May
Come Drive With Us – JBRL (Pending)
Come Drive With Us – DNC II: August
Come Drive With Us – The Ice Breaker: October

IFMAR Edit

I haven’t been keeping up with this blog quite as much as I’m very focused on the Perth edit right now.


Even without any narration, the cut is flowing really well which is always a good sign as my last two nitro worlds movies had this same trait. I’ve got 4 of the 6 rounds of Qualifying fully edited and the script for those sections is taking form quickly. The final day of qualifying is always the hardest because I need to ensure that I setup the story lines for the semi’s & the final properly. Also, one of the story lines for round 5 is pretty complex. Adam Drake extremely candid interview at DNC about Ryan Maifield’s REDS/OS deal and I’m trying to decide if I should put this interview in the Perth movie or save it for DNC II. It’s also a delicate topic and it’s taking a bit of time to do it right.

I’m really loving the content in this one, and I had quite a few different drivers frequenting the podium throughout qualifying so it one of the most diverse groups of featured drivers I’ve had in a CDWU episode yet.

I’m starting to get a bit worried though; Warner Chapelle hasn’t given me license for the music that I want to use as the title song. I’ve gotten really attached to the song and don’t want to have to replace it. Hopefully it works out! My plan is to release this episode in May; I have Silver State and a Conference with the Day-Job but I’ve made some great head ways on it in April.

Later on this week or possibly early next week I’ll be doing a short Silver State teaser for Joey so stay tuned…

IFMAR Worlds Edit – Day 51

It’s been a busy 20 days since I last posted.

While at DNC I did do a couple video’s in addition to the CDWU episode. I shot a video for my pal Adam Drake on his engine break-in service; check it out! I use this service for my own engines and quite frankly, I wouldn’t trust anyone else to do it. You’ll see why in the Perth Worlds movie. This segues me into a couple other topics I would like to talk about this week…

I actually race!

Well, I’m not sure you could really say what I do is racing; at least from an American Standard. It always cracks me up when locals think beating me is an accomplishment. I can hold my own in the 40+ class at races like DNC, but if I entered the pro-class, pretty sure I would be in the J-Main (or worse). But I love RC Racing! It’s been a passion of mine since 1991.

Hmmm…I just realized that people will read this who weren’t even born then.

This past summer my Dad passed away and my Mom gave me a stack of VHS tapes to digitize; in doing so, I actually found footage of my very first club-race ever with my Team Losi JRX Pro 2WD Buggy!

The scene up here is quite different to that of the US. The tracks aren’t nearly as polished; and neither is the racing. It really epitomizes grass roots up here.

My home track: the R/C Racers of Edmonton!

Even our biggest of races still have a club-race feel to them. Given that my filming schedule is nearly 2/3 done for the season, I am hoping to do a bit more racing in Western Canada this year; because quite frankly I love racing up here.

I truly believe that being a part of the racing side of this sport/hobby does help me produce CDWU in a way that resonates with people inside the industry. Where I think I might fail a bit on is catering to non-RC folk. The early episodes definitely did more of this, but because the series is now 17 episodes old, I’m not rehashing the history of RC and why we all do this. But I have a plan around this. More on that later…for now, next topic: IFMAR Movie!

Keyboard Warriors

Image result for keyboard warrior image

The Perth Worlds Movie, is going really well. I’ve got about 25 minutes fully edited; the cold-open is done, as is the opening credit sequence and I’m mostly done the practice session. Just cleaning up a few things and making sure I’m not missing any critical practice interviews. Next up will be the 3 days of Qualifying and the Finals. The qualifying portion should be pretty easy (until the final day). My day-Job has been pretty nuts lately as I have a major project on the go so I’m about a week behind “schedule”. But all-in-all going really good and the stories are working out really good.

One thing that has been bothering me over the past couple years is the keyboard warriors. These are people who think they know the whole story but in all actuality they know absolutely nothing; and yet, they are spouting their opinions on everything that happened at a particular race. The post-final tech was a perfect example of this. According to the Internet, this was started by the Tessmann’s…when it wasn’t. I’m not going to go into a ton of detail on this as you’re going to have to wait for the episode, but it really frustrates me when I see people getting slammed for something they didn’t do.

5150 really needs to invest in a Parabolic Microphone

The whole Reds / Ryan Maifield is another GREAT example (one that I’m covering in both the Perth Worlds Movie as well as DNC II). Even Elliott Boots leaving Kyosho; people were really hard on him on his own page, and I, a member of the RC Media, don’t even know what the full story is. So how is Billy from Tennessee gonna know? And why are we so hard on these guys anyways?

I have to admit; I’m guilty of this to a degree.

In the past I’ve cast judgement on some of the drivers I cover (Watch Reedy Episode to the Very end). When the top drivers would complain about the watering schedule for example, I truly used to think that they were just being cry-babies. The thing that we all have to realize is that this isn’t a hobby for them…it’s their job. It’s their livelihood. And something as innocuous as a watering schedule can impact them. Pretty sure I’d be a dick to anyone that sticks a camera in my face at work when things aren’t going well…or pretty much anytime that I’m at work for that matter…just sayin’…

…So when you watch the Perth movie, and you hear the top drivers talking about traffic troubles with privateers or puddles of water on the track, think about this before posting that you think they’re babies.

Anyways; I’ve got some exciting editing waiting for me, so back to it…

IFMAR Worlds Edit – Day 31

Even though it’s day 31 of the edit, with the exception of a bit of editing on the flight out to DNC I haven’t really touched the IFMAR edit. These past 10 days were purely about my 2nd sequel in the “Come Drive With Us” Series: DNC II.

The only work I did for the IFMAR movie this week was to do a couple interviews with Ryan Maifield and Ty Tessmann asking them a few questions about the Worlds Final; more specifically if there’s anything they would do differently. I also managed to get a critical story straight…and it’s going to be a bit of a bomb-shell 😉

20 Years of DNC

It’s truly amazing to me that “The Dirt” Nitro Challenge was run for the 20th time this year. It’s a real success story and show-cases the marketing genius that Joey Christensen really is. While the race started in Hemet California, for the past 10 years or so (I can’t remember exactly), the DNC has been synonymous with Phoenix Arizona.

My very first DNC was in 2013; I believe that was the 2nd year at Fear Farm; so that location is all I really knew, but I was introduced to a re-occurring DNC Theme…

BAD WEATHER!

The next year, I filmed my 2nd episode of “Come Drive With Us”. The weather that year was perfect so it made for an enjoyable filming experience. I returned (as a racer) for the 2015, 2016 & 2018 DNCs and even though some of these years were grueling, as a fan of this sport, I loved every minute of it. While qualifying at 2:45 am in 2016 wasn’t a highlight for me, I always understood the importance of this event and what it did for the industry as a whole.

“I don’t know why anyone who doesn’t have to be here would come to this race…”

– Anonymous pro-driver

While I completely understand this pro-drivers point of view, I do think there is a very simple answer to this statement:

Because it’s a chance to struggle along side the best drivers in the world for 5 days on an impossible track with equally impossible conditions and to see how fast the pro drivers really are.

It’s not all Unicorns & Rainbows

Philip Mortstedt shooting stills at the 2017 DNC

I absolutely love this race; it’s why I have referenced it over & over in my series. It is the “Anaheim 1” of R/C! So it makes me a bit sad to write this, but this 20th running of the DNC didn’t feel like a DNC to me. Don’t get me wrong, the race was well put together, and Joey and his crew did an absolutely stellar job; especially given all the challenges they were faced in putting on the Nitro Challenge. The Venue was also top-notch. While my feet HATED it, my Camera gear absolutely LOVED the asphalt pits.

Most importantly, this race (IMO) remains as Anaheim 1. There are just a few things that made this 20th running feel unlike any other DNC:

The Iconic Driver-Stand

Yes, this is a thing for me; and it’s most likely because I’m a photo nerd.

Granted, this structure was already gone last year and was replaced by a make-shift “Sea Can” style stand…so even last years DNC didn’t quite have the same feel to me…and maybe it’s the missing “Welcome to the DNC” banner…regardless, the loss of this structure takes just a little bit away for me.

Walking up the stairs of the old Fear Farm stand we were always greeted by the ceremonial “The Dirt” shovel; to our left was the staircase of broken dreams (drivers leaving the stand) and to our right were the hopeful few (drivers entering the stand).

Once on the stand, the track reveal made you realize that for the next 5-7 minutes…

…your life would be hell.

Media Coverage

In years past this race drew in every media outlet in the industry. In addition to LiveRC, the O’Brien brothers & Riccardo Acciari of RedRC would make the trip as would Phil with Arno in tow from Neobuggy. It seems that Phil has moved on to bigger and better things, but it just takes away the grandeur of this race without the full ensemble of media folk. RC Car Action was missing and RC Insider has shut-down but Chris from CircusRC.com was there all the way from France for his very first DNC…but for me it’s just not the way it used to be.

Blown Out Track

“It’s the Nitro Challenge, not the Nitro Easy…”

– Everyone

While the track at every DNC I raced on was challenging, this one looked like the it was on an entirely different level of “challenge” than years past. It was beyond “Character” or “Personality”…I think it was even beyond “freaking rough” as Joe Bornhorst would say. I didn’t get to race at RCToLV when it got blown out; and while the 2016 Worlds looked horrific to drive on, the drivers of this years DNC said it was worse than that. It was so rough in-fact, that it drew more than a few comparisons to the Boulder Nevada Silver State Races of old!

When I shoot a full episode, I don’t race; and quite often I really wish I could have competed. Especially with tracks like the 2016 Southern Nationals track, the 2015 ROAR Nationals track or the Neo Race. I did not get even an inkling of desire to drive this year’s DNC track.

Still an Iconic Event

The weather sucked. The driver stand didn’t have the “Titanic-ish” grand staircase. The track was blown out…

…but the 2019 Nitro Challenge was still an iconic event. This is a race that I will always say every enthusiast of this sport absolutely has to race once in their life. This track, more than any other DNC Track from recent memory, really separated the top drivers from the rest of the pack.

While my first DNC “Come Drive With Us” featured Ty Tessmann winning both Nitro Classes, DNC II will show how Ryan Maifield accomplished this same feat. Of all the Veteran racers, at 32 Ryan continues to impress me the most. He quite literally gave a pants-down spanking to everyone in the Truggy main; in Buggy it wasn’t quite so painful for his competitors, it was still a decisive victory however. Even though he wasn’t the fastest driver on the track (Phend, Ongaro & Tessmann to name a few were all faster), his 94% consistency on this cratered track was unmatched and helped give him the win with a 1 lap cushion. Considering the field that he was competing against this was an amazing accomplishment. Adam’s closing thoughts on this topic are absolutely epic…but y’all are going to have to wait for the episode to see who he called out!!! #Sorry #NotSorry

While Maifield’s wins were impressive, the highlight for me was the 18 burnouts I did with my Hemi powered Dodge Challenger Rental Car! I currently have a C7 reserved for Silver State…but we’ll see if Budget will rent me another car…ever again…

Reno…next year we drag-race ’em!!!

*Photo Credits: Rugspin Graphix & Neobuggy.Net

“The Dirt” Nitro Challenge

We will be filming for DNC II, our second sequel of the “Come Drive With Us” series, at the Nitro Challenge this year. We’re looking forward to telling the story of this amazing race, now in it’s 20th year, at a brand new venue!

IFMAR Worlds Edit – Day 19

Given that I’m leaving for the 20th running of “The Dirt” Nitro Challenge tomorrow, I’m not sure how much I’ll be working on the IFMAR edit over the next week or so.

I started editing the first of the footage though.

Like the Vegas worlds, I’m starting this Episode with a recap of the past two years. This episode basically starts immediately after the 2016 IFMAR Worlds ended.

There were some cool shots that just didn’t fit into the end of the Vegas Worlds Movie, so like the 2016 episode, this one will have a significant “Cold Open”. Because the 2016 Worlds were domestic, I certainly was a lot more active at shooting B-Roll for those worlds at various events. I believe I did B-Roll shoots at DNC, Silver State, the Pro-Line Gas Champs and the Worlds Warm Up race. I don’t have nearly as much footage for this one so the lead-up to the episode likely won’t be 20 minutes like it was for the last Nitro Worlds.

It’s still got some great stories though!

  • CJ Jelin’s first race as a Pro
  • Jared Tebo on his future (Closing off theme initiated at the Xiamen Worlds)
  • Ryan Maifield pulling off a trifecta of Pro-Class wins at DNC’17
  • Ty’s streak of bad-luck in 2017
  • First foreign driver winning the DNC’18
  • But wait…there’s MORE!

So I end this week with the “Cold Open” completed. Now I’m starting on the Opening Credit Sequence. I haven’t quite decided on what this will look like yet; sometimes I get ambitious/inspired and do a full-on After Effects motion graphics intro; other times I keep it pretty simple. Since I did a cool intro sequence for Silver State II, and have a really awesome one planned for JBRL, for the sake of consistency I think I have to do something for the Perth Worlds movie too.

Now to send a whack of e-mails to a few music providers to get the licensing process initiated. Going for an Ozzie (thanks Ben hehe) theme with the opening credits music, but I have to deal with Warner Chappell for the first time. I wish I had a PA for this part of the job…hate it!!!

New B-Camera!

After forgetting my Electronic View-Finder for my A-Camera and having to spend $184 to have it shipped to me in Australia, I am glad that I packed my B-Camera. However, it is another full-size production camera
(SONY FS700R); so it made my Carry-On really freaking big. I started doing this for the 2017 season and it hasn’t been an issue until Qantas Airways. They’re real dicks sticklers on the size & weight of Carry-On and made me check one of my carry-on bags which made me more than a little nervous. So I kept my A & B cameras, Laptop & Lenses and let them take my drone and clothes. Worst case scenario, no aerial footage and I’d be filming in my underwear. Fortunately there were no issues with any of my luggage but I had everything with me to successfully complete the production.

At the worlds I noticed that Mat McCallum was filming a video for the all new RCGP series on a Sony A7III. I believe that David Ronnefalk’s official Videographer was using the same camera (could be wrong on the model, but it was definitely a SONY alpha). So when I got home I rented an A7R III to do testing to see if it would work for the Cinematography I do for my series. I ended up doing an internal team video for Ledcor with this camera exclusively and it worked out great!

So I bought one.

SONY A7R III Mounted atop a DJI RONIN-S Gimbal

In keeping with my light-weight theme, I also picked up a DJI Ronin-S Gimbal. When compared with my Ronin 1 setup (below), it’s a huge savings in both size and weight. My DNC trip will be the first time out with this new B-Camera setup.

The FS700R Mounted on my DJI RONIN 1 weighs in at just under 20 lbs.

I still might bring my Ronin 1 along to DNC for use with my A-Camera but it wouldn’t surprise me at all if it just stayed in the case for the entire 5 days.

If you’re coming to the Nitro Challenge be sure to stop by the Pro-Line Truck and say “Hi”.

IFMAR Worlds Edit – Day 14

Hard to believe I’ve been working on this Movie for two weeks now! Some of you may not know this, but I actually have a day-job completely unrelated to Video Production (for now). I am a manager of an I.T. Team at a 3 Billion Dollar / Year construction company called Ledcor. So all the productions I create are in addition to my day-job. Never the less, as much of my free time that I can spare has been dedicated to this Episode.

I was actually on one of my many business trips for Ledcor, sitting at YVR waiting for my flight home when I finished watching & tagging the last of the footage. Final count is 2,599 shots; I’ve never actually counted, but I think that I typically use approximately 300-600 shots in the final cut.

The Footage

Given the pressure at a worlds and the aforementioned “Challenges” I had on this shoot (I stand by my words), I’m really happy with the footage. The story lines are really good and will make for a compelling episode. I ran across a few shots that I would like to talk a bit about.

Father & Son

The first one is a beautiful moment shared by a Father and Son. This isn’t a new theme for “Come Drive With Us” as I touched on it at Surf City, but I found a new perspective on the Father/Son dynamic. Finishing in the 183rd spot was a youngster named Mica Thompson; he was quite disappointed with his performance; he just couldn’t quite figure out the critical double-triple combination. His Dad, unlike a lot of other RC Dads I’ve come across over my 25 years in this sport, was there supporting him all the way. This shot really says it all:

Statler & Waldorf: Famous Hecklers

Granted the sport of RC is still a “Hobby” for the Thompsons and the stakes aren’t as high for them as other Father/Son teams in the industry. Mica’s dad really did show what the role of an RC Parent should be. Supporter…not the angry heckler. Hopefully as Mica starts to take the sport of RC more seriously, he and his father keep focus and always remember that this is how it should be. The last thing we need in this sport are more Muppets (insert laugh track).

The Incumbent

I saw this shot upon my first walk of the track. I knew the angle I had everything planned out and was ready for the shot. You would think it would have been as simple as waiting for the required Buggy and hitting Record, but I literally tried taking this shot for 7 days! Each time I thought the moment was right, either the driver would take the jump in the wrong spot, or I had the wrong buggy, or the wind wasn’t behaving, or, or or…

I have all but given up on this shot. Until the even Semi-Final, when I noticed that the wind was finally blowing in the right direction. I set my focus and waited for David Ronnefalk to take the Step-Up Jump. Nailed it on the first take; it’s a wonderful Slow-Motion Shot. I did two more takes on subsequent laps, but the first one was the best one.

David Ronnefalk over the Step-Up

I’m not going to Lie; I do wish that there was a Canadian Flag here, and I was tempted to do a midnight swap…but this shot is definitely a keeper. With David being the incumbent IFMAR World Champion, this shot will have a place of prominence in the final cut. It has to! I WAITED 7 DAYS TO GET IT!!!

Detailed Synopsis

I’m sure there are more than a few shots I will come across over the next few weeks that might be blog-worthy, but for now it’s onto the next step. While tagging all the footage, I’ve also been working on a fairly detailed synopsis.

The synopsis for this episode is the most detailed one I’ve created; in point of fact, for Silver State II I dove right into the edit and that one worked out not too badly. I’m curious to see what affect (if any) this will have on the Perth Worlds edit. Today I am still making a couple decisions, like what the opening scene will be, then I’m going to go through the Synopsis again visualizing what this movie might look like. Finally, it will be time for my favorite part of the project…

…THE EDIT!

IFMAR Worlds Edit – Day 7

I pretty much finished reviewing the media coverage of the worlds last weekend. Found some really good stuff that I TOTALLY forgot happened! My pal Daniel “Coogs” Cuglietta also pointed me to a VLOG by Lee Martin & Chris James that shared some really good insights also. Check it out; it’s a pretty good:

…although…I don’t think its name is applicable…

Lee Martin Sending it at the Xiamen Worlds…pretty sure this one needed a marshal…

Since last Monday, I’ve been watching the footage I shot at MORBC. There are definitely some gems here.

5150’s new DJI Mavic II Pro at Pinnacles Park in Western Australia

For many CDWU shoots, I walk away from it disappointed with my Aerial shots. I think that just might have been because of the budget drone I was using (Free isn’t always better). Just prior to the Auzzie Worlds, I purchased a DJI Mavic II Pro and am super happy with the shots! Especially the Hyper-lapse shots I took of the track.

2,944 SHOTS!!!

Over the years I’ve developed a nice clean folder structure that works for me; it makes it easy to find clips when I need them; even if I’m outside of my editing suite (Adobe Premiere). Given the volume of shots that I tend to take whilst on a CDWU shoot; having a clean folder structure is crucial.

This part really sucks…

While my A & B Camera’s both have the ability to manipulate the naming of clips slightly, they’re still not overly descriptive.

CDWU_P5_0120.mov

This is an example of the file names coming off of my SONY Cameras. While this naming convention helps me during the cagaloging process, the only thing I really know for sure is that this clip is from the 5th practice round. I have no clue whatsoever what the contents of this clip is. So before the edit can start, I need to give this clip a good name. This way, if I need a shot of various drivers wrenching, all I will need to do in Premiere is filter for ‘Wrenching’ and every single shot of this type will come up.

Saturday P5 – Tanner Stees Wrenching

Turns out this was a shot of Tanner Stees wrenching on his XRAY Buggy.

1 Down…2943 to go…

No Pain…No Shot!

As I’ve been going through, and calaloging all my footage I’ve come across a few shots with some stories behind them. I suppose I’m known as being a bit crazy when it comes to getting the perfect shot. My fellow media pals have often said

“You’re Insane!”

And they just might be onto something.

At most IFMAR Worlds I tend to get in-field shots during all practice rounds as well as the all warm-up sessions in the qualifiers. This would not be allowed at these worlds; which I’m fine with. What this did mean however, was that I would be getting shots of the top drivers that I would be covering, who were on the track with…shall we say…lesser drivers.

I really wanted to get a shot on the opposite side of the Step-Up as it had a perfect angle on the jump as well as the Driver Stand. The catch was…my back would be to a double jump on a corner. I hunched over so that if I did get hit, my Camera would be fine.

The good news; I got my shot!!!

The bad news…it took two Buggies (one in the shoulder and one to the ribs) to get the shots I needed of all the top drivers from this angle…

Anyways…I’m about halfway through Cataloging; next up will be creating a synopsis of sorts and then the edit really starts…

*Feature photo credit: NeoBuggy.Net

IFMAR Worlds Edit – Day 0

Now that I’ve got the Silver State II release behind me, and have finished a quick edit on the Mike Reedy Heritage Video for the Reedy Race, it’s time to focus on the next project. I’ve decided to start a blog of sorts on the edit of the IFMAR World championships which were held in Perth, Australia last November.

I truly love the IFMAR worlds…especially when it’s a 1/8 scale year! For me, as a fan of the sport of R/C, the excitement of crowning a world champion for the next two years is hard to beat. Plus, I have access to all the drivers, not just the North American ones thus, IFMAR events are my favorite stories to tell.

The shoot at these worlds wasn’t exactly memorable. 45 minutes into 25 hours of travel I realized that I forgot the view finder (EVF) for my A-Camera. Fortunately I packed my B-Camera which has basically the same quality as my A-Camera so it would only be a minor inconvenience until I received my EVF kit it in the mail on day 2 of the 7 day shoot. Next crisis was blowing out two tires on my POS rental car, then I got hit by two buggies while filming, the live broadcasting company turned out to be a bunch of douche bags and MORBC really had no clue how to treat accredited media…

…even with all these issues, this was a very fun Worlds. Over the course of this 7-day shoot I still managed to capture an amazing event. Once the dust settled, and the nitro fumes subsided, I had 2,944 shots!!!

So where do I start? Well, on Day 0 of this edit, which I am going to assume is going to last around 6-weeks, I am adding all the media coverage and race reports from RedRC.net and from NeoBuggy to my SharePoint Portal. I also go through all my notes I took at the event, and add pertinent content to my site. Once I’ve got everything uploaded…I start reading it…all of it.

The next step…watch every single shot, catalog it and add META data. That’s a task for another day. For today, it’s a refresher course on everything that happened in Perth.

*Feature photo credit: Kai Jaeger