Photographers who love SBK®: Kel Edge

Friday, 31 August 2018 09:00 GMT

Regular WorldSBK photographers offer a special photo from their archive

The photographer: Kel Edge

Kel Edge is the man who was always there. He has covered MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship events since Day One, something that not many people can claim. This veteran professional began to shoot motorbike races in 1980, including the World Endurance Championship and the Grand Prix World Championship. “I carried on doing the World Endurance championship, including Suzuka 8 Hours, and I’d say about 60% of the GPs each year until Superbikes started in 1988”, he recalls. “In 1988 the first race was at Donington Park, and I was there, at that first race”. Since then, this respected British photographer has centered his work around the production-based bikes series. “I’ve only missed a few races, so I’ve probably now done well over 800 WorldSBK races!”.

The photo: Brands Hatch adores Fogarty

“This photograph is perhaps not the best action picture in the world, but was a bit special”, Edge explains about the picture he has chosen for this series. “Carl Fogarty was the current world champion. At Brands Hatch there were huge crowds that came just to see Carl in his pomp. On this particular day on the Sunday, there were over 125,000 spectators at the circuit. At 7:30 they were queuing, so we knew it was going to be a special day. During the race, I did the normal grid shot with people on the grid, and then walked down to the first corner and did various shots as they came down the straight. But I was actually hoping that Carl Fogarty would win the race, and I was hoping that he would either wave or do something special for the fans, particularly at the first corner, because that of course is the first corner after he’s taken the checkered flag”.

“I changed position specially just in case he did something special for the fans. I think at the time I was probably the only photographer who moved to that point, past the starting line, and I got ready. When he crossed the line to take the victory, as he went through the first corner, which was Paddock Bend, he just put his hand up and waved to the fans. What makes the picture is, he wasn’t just the number one in the race, but also he had the number one on his back; he has one finger up for his win, and you can see the crowds of fans waving back to their rider”.