28 Seconds

It took 28 seconds from my first view of the cyclists as they rounded the corner some distance down the road until the last of the 189 cyclists had passed me. Last Sunday, the Tour de France started in London, and I thought I shouldn’t entirely miss it. I decided Woolwich would be a good place, just a few miles down the road from the real start of the race in Greenwich.
(C) 2007, Peter Marshall
People had already started to gather along the route when I arrived an hour before the riders. Fortunately it was a fine day and many settled down at the roadside with the Sunday newspapers or a book as the occasional race vehicle drove past.

Finally, along came the pack of riders.

(C) 2007, Peter Marshall
I’m not a sports photographer, and hadn’t really though I’d take more than one or two pictures, but the excitement carried me away a little and I found I’d made around 30 shots – and for the first time ever had managed to fill the 21 shot buffer on the D200. Had I really been intending to take pictures I should have switched from raw to jpeg for the event, and I could have shot many more.

Normally the only time I ever run into buffer problems is when the card is nearly full. The camera won’t allocate more images than it thinks it has space to write to disk, so you can find the buffer will only hold a few images. It usually makes sense to put in a new card whenever you find there are less than 21 shots (the full buffer capacity) left.

Actually it gets a bit silly, as the current Nikon firmware doesn’t attempt to estimate the actual number of shots left if you are using compressed NEF. So it acts like there are only 21 left when in fact you will fit roughly double this number onto the card. It’s a problem that Nikon fixed on the D70 in a firmware upgrade, but which they have left on the later D200.

From the race I went back to the cycling festival in Hyde Park, where there was some more racing (and I took a few more snaps) as well as other related activities.

(C) 2007, Peter Marshall
More pictures coming on My London Dairy

Peter Marshall

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