Gallery: 2016 AquaX Season in Review From a Photographer’s View


kurt

Now that my coverage of the 2016 AquaX race season coverage has come to an end, I thought that a review was in order. Back in April of this year, the season was approaching with the first race of the season in Tavares, Florida and my anticipation of covering it was at an all time high. Unfortunately, my excitement came to a crashing (no pun) low, as that morning less than a mile away from my house, I was involved in a serious vehicle crash. This was not the way that I was expecting my season to begin.

My season would have to wait until the next round in Daytona Beach, Florida. Daytona is one of my favorite locations to cover as the action is abundant and the close proximity of the racing to the shore. Unless you have a gigantic lens for shooting, the closer you can get to the action the better it is, and Daytona always gets extremely close to the beach. It was great seeing all the racers who have become very close to me and who I enjoy capturing their competitiveness and camaraderie. Daytona did not disappoint as usual.

Next was St. Cloud and even though it was good to be back out taking pictures, something wasn’t feeling right with me. The thrill wasn’t there and I felt as though I was just going through the motions. After being so close to the action at Daytona, I kind of get spoiled when I’m not that close to get those dazzling shots that I know I’m capable of getting.

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Next up was Sarasota for the 4th of July weekend, and I had high hopes of getting that drive again as the previous year it was my second favorite location after Daytona. Sarasota, Florida was a major let down for me as I again wasn’t close to the action as the course was set further off shore compared to the previous year and not being allowed to get on a boat for whatever reason.

It was so bad that I had not gotten any shots for the entire weekend and was stressing as not being able to bring coverage. Thanks to my dear friend Simone Mia Smith I was able to get some shots so coverage was still brought but it was a huge disappointment for me, as I like to be in control of what I bring. The season was half way through and I was starting to feel like it wasn’t worth it anymore for me to cover it but I decided to continue as I’m not one to quit on what I promised to do.

Due to locations in Chicago, I had to wait for the next set of races in Florida to return. Lake Worth, Florida was the next stop and second-to-last race of the season. This was a new location and the uncertainty of how it was going to be had me a little nervous. Due to the huge gap in between Sarasota and this race I was feeling a bit of excitement to get out there and shoot but the question was still in the back of my head if I wanted to continue doing this. Lake Worth was an excellent location as I was able to shoot from the pier and it was definitely a great location. It was good seeing everyone after such a long break and I was looking forward to the last location of Fort Lauderdale, Florida for the final race of the season.

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Fort Lauderdale finally arrived and I was pretty stoked as it was a new location, and it was so close to the beach that I knew I would get some great shots and bring the coverage that I was used to bringing. Unfortunately, the event did not start off the way that I was expecting and came crashing down (no pun). As I was set to begin and make it to the beach, my lens unexpectedly came off my camera body and came crashing to the ground. Can you say major disaster? Again thanks to my dear friend and fellow photographer Simone Mia Smith; she lent me her extra camera and lens. Granted it was not a brand that I had ever shot with before but I was definitely grateful and in her debt for coming through for me.

I was able to get through the weekend and got the shots that I needed to bring the coverage of the races. Due to the accident with my lens and the cost of Fort Lauderdale I started to get that feeling of if it was worth it anymore to cover these races. I had to do some serious rethinking and after discussion with my friend Simone I came to the conclusion that it wasn’t financially feasible to continue anymore and after all the downs this year I wasn’t getting the enjoyment anymore out of doing it. I felt as though this was my last race as a photographer and writer.

Fortunately, after discussing how I was feeling I am glad to say that I will continue to bring coverage of this series. It was a hard year with what seemed to be more down than ups but I pressed through them and I am looking forward to seeing what next year will bring. On this note keep you eyes open and the hand on the throttle and we shall bring you the coverage that you have come to expect next year.

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Kurt NgSaye

Kurt NgSaye is originally from New York City and after serving many years in the Air Force now calls Melbourne Florida home. He’s a current jet-ski rider/racer He’s an avid photographer and has taken pictures of many events across the sunshine state to include P1 Aqua X and Daytona Freeride. “I’m just out there having fun.”

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