Or, How I Made A Mess Of Myself
For the last semester, in my advanced cinematography class, we have been involved in producing some marketing footage for Kirkham Motorsports. Kirkham makes replica Shelby Cobras. It has been a really fun project that was broken up into three sections. We had a shop day where we filmed promo footage at their shop. A day was spent at the Nebo loop, part of the Wasatch mountains, and, the last was part was spent at the Miller Motor Sports Park. I was really excited to be a part of this, especially after being raised by my gear-head father. I spent most of the day near the track, filming close shots with Chris Hill and Brandon Beckham. It was a lot of fun watching these cars making 130 mph passes. It wasn’t long befire I was really itching to have some of the action to myself.
During lunch, the opportunity arose to do some in car filming. Me and Chris both jumped at the chance to do it. Chris hopped into a Cobra, and I jumped into a brand new 2007 Subaru WRX Sti. Now, many people may balk that I would rather jump into a Subaru then hit the Cobras. I have been a huge Subaru advocate for a long time, and thought the idea of doing 90 mph all-wheel drive drifts sounded like a good idea. So, we took a few laps, it was great. We played chase camera to the Cobra, and got some good footage.
The shooting was pretty intense. It took every muscle in my body to try and keep the camera straight, and true. I ended up wearing a full face helmet that after a few laps started to get a little stuffy. Now, I have been snowmobiling for most of my life, and am used to wearing a helmet. This helmet, as soon as the lid shut, latched shut, and I was unable to open it…
As we raced around the track, I was giddy for joy. I just about giggled, but I thought the dude next to me might think less of me, so I restrained myself, and pushed ahead. Lap after lap, as the g-forces worked on me, I started to get a little queasy. Now, when I was a kid, I used to get car sick really easy, so I put down the camera, and just focused on the road ahead. I decided that some air would help, and I tried to lift the mask of the helmet. It wouldn’t move. It decided to just stay fastened shut. I used both hands to try to get the helmet open, but nothing would get it open… I started to get nervous, and a little bit of claustrophobia settled in on me.
It was the last lap, and the driver asked me if we were done. I was eager to finish. And we headed for pit row. I put the camera at my feet, knowing that it was valued around $7000, to the cars $35,000. I pushed and pulled to do everything that I could do to get the helmet off, but to no avail. I ended up puking into the helmet before I got it off. Then, all over the car. Then all over the sidewalk. It was way embarrassing… What a way to end the semester, puking all over yourself in front of your peers and a client.
In the end, I was able to get it all cleaned up, and the driver of the car was way cool about it. I feel bad knowing that he was only able to get a few laps in his cobra, and only a few more before the Subaru got destroyed for the day. I hear that we are going to have another track day, I will stay out of the the car, and there might be a little less mess at the end of the day.