24. Hours. Daytona. Even writing that headline doesn’t feel right.

It was an incredible feeling of pride getting to be a part of one of the most prestigious races in the world. My good friend Dan and I drove down on Tuesday to prepare for my photo duties for the week. I had to work in the studio on Wednesday then focus on race action the rest of the week.

It seemed like it took forever for the race to get there, but by the time 2:30pm rolled around on Saturday, I was ready! The first half seemingly rolled by pretty quick. Around 1 and 2am, I was still feeling good and motivated.

At 3am I hit a wall. On and off rain, cold wind, wet feet, wet gear, few people left at the track (much less awake.) I had to take a walk. I went over to the media center and had a good talk with my buddy Justin. At 4am I had my first coffee, that helped a ton. Then I geared up and headed to the backstretch to get slow pans of rooster tails. After that, I just wandered around the infield for a while. Just a nice peaceful walk right in the middle of one of the biggest races in the world.

Then the long caution came. I’m not sure, but I think we were under caution from 5:30am to 7:30am. There was no sunrise. My coffee had worn off. It was time to go back out in the rain with plastic bags hanging off of my cameras. I wasn’t in an exactly “creative mood”, I just knew that this was the best way to pass the time, and the only way to stay awake.

I regret not experimenting more while I was there. I’ll blame it on the weather and exhaustion, but that’s still not much of an excuse. I had the opportunity, and I should have made more of it. If the chance comes up again, I’ll do better.