Offroad Ontario XC #2 MotoPark Photo Report

© Cecile Gambin Photography Offroad Ontario XC #2 held at MotoPark, Chatsworth, Ontario this past weekend is in the bag and all event photos can be found HERE.

I have fond memories of MotoPark having first visited back in the mid-90’s for the XC Mountain Bike Provincial Championships. I think I ‘podium-ed’ so was happy. However, my second visit last year dampered my spirits as the rock laden course broke my back (not quite literally but close enough). Unable to finish the race I was faced with the daunting task of walking back to my car, loading my bike and driving back home in excruciating pain. My downfall was from coming back too early from a previous injury, setting me back for another 3-4 months. A hard lesson learned. This is my type course – rocky, flowing and technical. But I remember all too well the pain, sleepless nights and not being able to chase after my then 2 year old that I turned to my camera instead of my bike this time around and made sure I had a full bottle of Advil in my car. Just in case.


Juggling for the holeshot is always risky and this long fast straight  made for some exciting action shots at the start line at the morning race.
Juggling for the hole shot is always risky and this long fast straight made for some exciting action shots at the start line of the morning race.
Rocks everywhere even when you least expect it. Solid rocks, baby heads, moving least they were dry.
Rocks everywhere even when you least expect it. Solid rocks, baby heads, moving rocks…at least they were dry. Terry S. showing us how to ride the line cleanly.
In the afternoon race similar carnage took action this time that nasty metal and plastic crunch was heard ejecting the rider off his bike.
In the afternoon race similar carnage took action this time that nasty metal and plastic crunch was heard ejecting the rider off his bike.
Rider #538 pinned under another riders bike after his spectacular chute from his Yamaha.
Rider #538 pinned under # 548’s bike after his spectacular chute from his Yamaha.
Thankfully no one was injured and the race continued.
Thankfully no one was injured and the race continued.
Always a treat to watch the afternoon classes climb the deeply rutted, rocky rooted uphill.
Laying it sideways and taking home the gold. Congrats to Wojo for a hard fought race.
Laying it sideways and taking home the gold. Congrats to Wojo for a hard fought race.


Once again the folks at Halton Off Road Riders Association (HORRA) and Offroad Ontario (OO) put on another successful event. For complete results please log onto OO’s website (see link above) and enter their forum. Over 140 riders turned out for this years race and those who spent the time working out this winter were most likely rewarded with a podium finish. This is a punishing course! Don’t forget to release the air out of your suspension as they will have had a major workout.

Congratulations extended to Brian Wojnarowski for taking top honours in the Pro Mens Class. And as always, kudos to the numerous volunteers needed to run events such as these!









Terra Nova Enduro Photo Report

Welcome to the 55th edition of the Terra Nova Enduro 2012 which was largely set in beautiful Mulmur Hills, Ontario and surrounding area. For event photos please click HERE.

The crew at The Halton Off Road Riders Association (HORRA) put on yet another stunning and well run event. Despite the rather gloomy forecast rain was only evident in the morning and replaced by warm winds and cloudy skies by early afternoon. All the typical Terra Nova tracks one comes to expect were used including single track from various Simcoe County Forests, and private tracks from Lance’s, Neils, and Lee’s farms. Shame on those who stayed in bed – the weather man got it all wrong and you missed a fun yet challenging event.

Following the new style of enduros HORRA wasted no time in created a super cool enduroX. Lee Martin and Kevin Burnett (Rally Connex) worked hard, moved land, and re-sculpted the old MX track at Primose campground. Considering the size of the track I am sure others helped out and hats off to you. The EnduroX was definitely a Terra Nova highlight and created quite the level of awesomeness!

It takes a lot of work to put together an enduro of this length (190km+) and, again, without the help of the countless volunteers events like this would not be possible. A huge thank you to all you unsung heroes.

The first special test of the day was a greasy but fun one.
My favourite quote of the day came from Vet. Expert supastar Rome Haloftis: ‘I fell OFF the grass track’. Not sure how you fall off a flat grass track but look Rome…someone else did too 🙂
OFTR watchdog. Looks downright vicious doesn’t he?
This foot long hotdog wasn’t the meal of choice for the riders but…
…it was this puppy’s choice of food who really didn’t appreciate me taking his picture. Joking it’s a Halloween prop!!
This rider (Bill?) came in hot into the EnduroX and gave the spectators the most entertaining show with his go for broke ‘ride ’em cowboy’ style. Not sure what the time was on his report card but IMO he was the fastest through the X section.
While some riders landed nose down KTM’s Mission Cycle backed rider Kevin Cockayne rode through with the front wheel up and landed the top step on the podium in the Pro class.
The log section.
Lee Martin showing us the line in the final corner of the X section before the big, sandy uphill finish.
The wall. Intimidating from the bottom.


I would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone for taking the time to read my blog, and purchasing photos. Your support is truly appreciated and while I cannot contribute to the household income my hopes are to cover gas expenses and repair my equipment when it gets damaged from the elements (mainly water, dust and sand). For me photography is not only recording an instance it is also an art form and I strive to include art into my photographs. Your comments good or bad are always appreciated (constructive feedback is how I learn). Spread the word. It’s been a ride this year and sorry I didn’t get any photos from the Great Pine Enduro. I had the itch to race myself. Find me on Facebook on my page ‘Cecile Gambin Photography’ for the latest updates.
Oh look…it’s a Berg. A sandy Berg. Had it had been any colder I could have said an ‘ice Berg’. But since it was rather mild I’ll just call it a tired Berg. hehehehe…
No disrespect intended on my behalf … but thanks for the entertainment and good photo ops at the finish line 🙂
Thank you HORRA, racers, volunteers, Primose Campground, land owners and many others for a great day!





Terra Nova Enduro 2011

The final round of the Enduro series was held in the beautiful Halton region with cool temperatures, sunny skies and a hint of rain. Well…maybe not a hint but more like a short downpour. Kudos again to all the participants and to all the volunteers (HORRA) who have put on another successful enduro.

I had my work cut out for me today and definetily made the right choice of using my car instead of my KTM to get around to the different areas. I needed my full gear (2 tripods, flashes, lenses etc.) as the light went from sunny to cloudy and back to sunny to full on rain.

This poor fellow decided to take a drink but lukily saved his bike and he was able to lift it back upright and continue along merrily…although a wee bit wet and cold now.

My left foot took a similiar drink as water came over the top of my boot while I was setting up my tripods in the river. I had wanted to bring them a bit closer to the riders but the current was fairly strong in the middle (and deep). Plus I really didn’t want anybody knocking them over. SB-800’s do not like water. No spark plugs to change here … just a lot of electronics. So I had to do with the ambient light and whatever light I could get from my flashes.

This was definetly my hardest shoot to date. Trying to rig up the flashes to not bounce off the water, keeping them from a safe distance, putting plastic bags over them to keep them dry, and forever changing their output levels (light kept shifting constantly) made for a very busy and hectic afternoon. I learned a lot from this experience. Not only did I learn from a technical viewpoint but I also learned to ALWAYS carry a spare set of socks! Luckily my Bogs kept me feet warm.

Throughout the year I have been taking pictures of both mountain biking and off-road riding enduro events and have loved every minute of it. I have enjoyed the hikes, scouting for locations (unfortunately, usually last minute), seeing racers in action and trying my best to create an artistically appealing picture that make the riders look good. The best part though was the socialising. I love to talk and meet people!

Reflecting on the year though I have to be honest and say that taking pictures of an event that uses a 100+km route is not easy. Trying to scout for locations, finding them, hiking in, setting up the equipment (flashes, tripods, wireless triggers), driving to the next spot while tyring to nail a few good shots and showcase as many riders as possible is not an easy feat. A lot of time (and gas) is spent trying to find those special areas. I usually try and get to 2-3 different spots and try to get as many people as possible. Unfortunately, that’s not always possible and to those ‘unsung’ heros that did not find a picture of themselves I apologise. I try my best to get everyone.

Shooting in a closed circuit is much easier and perhaps I’ll dabble into that next year at Hare Scrambles. But, I would also love to race a few of them again. Now if only I could get a job that would allow me time to race and take pictures…now that would be ideal.

 See you at the races next year. And remember all my pictures are for sale. Check out my Flickr page for the pictures and price list of Terra Nova 2011: Please join me on Facebook under Cecile Gambin Photography to keep tabs on what I’m doing with my photography, what event I’ll be at next and to see and learn about my fine art photographs.