Shooting with Dan Sharp

The Rapha Continental – Amgen Tour of California 2011 films and photos are now live on the site. The video were done by a fantastic Portland based crew by the name of the DropTree Productions. This was the very same crew that shot and assembled last years Gentlemen’s Race, and they will be with us when we head to Colorado at the beginning of next month. The photos were done by none other than Dan Sharp. He has been involved with this project from the very beginning and as a riding partner to us all.

Dan has a particular style and if you look back through some of the photos that we have put up over the past few years you will see that start to emerge. He likes to play with the available light, shadows and reflections tend to stand out more than with others. There is also an intimacy that Dan draws out with his subjects. This could be, in part, because he is such a good photographer that he looks for these moments, but the other part of that is his personal connection to the riders. We have all ridden with Dan Sharp and it is possible that he picks up on our eccentricities and channels them in through his photos.

There is something that Dan does that sets him apart from a few of the others though. He shoots and rides at the same time. It was a trick that he pulled out of his bag of tricks for our third day of riding in California. Stage Five from Seaside to Paso Robles, which has now been changed (in the actual race) due to the roads being out, was a winding route next to the ocean on Hwy1. The vehicular support had been stymied for this very same reason, a road had partly collapsed preventing anyone but cyclists and people on foot from getting through. Dan did the right thing and kitted up and grabbed his camera. Fortunately for us he had decided to bring his bike along to get some riding in when we were done for the day and before you knew it he was on the road with us.

That mornings ride turned out to be absolutely fantastic as we had the road to ourselves and the sun coming up over the hills. Dan rode with us for the majority of the morning, snapping photos as we zipped along next to the water. His photos, in my estimation, inherited some of his enthusiasm for riding, and we were much better for it. His excitement could not be contained and we were all “smiles for miles” that morning.

Thanks to Dan Sharp for lending his well trained eye to the photo side of the Rapha Continental’s take on the Amgen Tour of California.