Peace in the Paddock
Photography / September 24, 2012

Peace in the Paddock

I managed to get up to the second day of the Phoenix Park Motor Races this year – great to see the event being run again. I didn’t have the car with me this time, but I did have the camera! I saw these two guys sitting down having a chat just after the historic racing bike demonstration. No doubt they were discussing all things to do with racing and bikes. The part that really caught my eye was the modified caravan – also used as a bike transporter! Brilliant. That is without a doubt, the most novel use of a caravan I’ve ever seen!

In Photos: Corkscrew Hillclimb 2011
Motoring/Photography / April 07, 2012

In Photos: Corkscrew Hillclimb 2011

I totally forgot I had these photos! I couldn’t drive at this event last year, so I decided to take along the camera with one goal for the day – do something different (photographically speaking). I have hundreds of relatively static-looking images from hills and rallys before, so I wanted to see if I could do justice to the sport (Hillclimbing) and it’s beautiful surroundings (UNESCO World Heritage Area, The Burren, Co. Clare) by playing with the camera and composition. Let me know what you think!




Cars and Coffee Limerick – Pt. 2
Photography / March 05, 2012

Cars and Coffee Limerick – Pt. 2

The remainder of the photos from Cars and Coffee in Limerick on Sunday March 4th 2012.

&copy Denis Hogan  (3)

Possibly my favourite shot from the day – only in Ireland could you have a Cortina and an FD RX7 parked beside each other.

&copy Denis Hogan  (8)


&copy Denis Hogan  (9)

I’m not really into modding cars myself – but I have to say this FD looked great.


&copy Denis Hogan  (5)

There were two nice 911s in attendence (and a Boxster too, I think).

&copy Denis Hogan  (1)

A big ole Pontiac.

&copy Denis Hogan  (2)

A Ferrari 308 in that unmistakable shade of Red.

&copy Denis Hogan  (6)

And from the same family – one of my fav’s on the day – a spottless Fiat 500.

&copy Denis Hogan  (7)

This BMW has clearly been around Limerick for a few years now!

&copy Denis Hogan  (10)

An Opel GT – lovely looking machine. Apparently it’s running all modern internals, so it’s nice and reliable now.

&copy Denis Hogan  (11)

Some of the crowd, milling around, taking in the sights.

&copy Denis Hogan  (12)


&copy Denis Hogan  (13)

This may well be the fastest truck in all of Ireland!

That’s it for the coverage of Cars and Coffee for March. I won’t be able to make the next meet up as it clashes with the first rounds of the Hillclimb and Sprint championship. But I’ll be back to cover more event’s later in the year.



Cars and Coffee Limerick – Pt. 1
Photography / March 04, 2012

Cars and Coffee Limerick – Pt. 1

Cars and Coffee was on in Limerick this morning, so I decided to take a spin over and see what was happening. The concept is simple, you drive over to the Eastway Plaza just off the Ballysimon road, park up, get yourself a coffee and wander around looking at cars.

I enjoyed the morning, it was great to see such a diverse selection of machinery in one place. Some beautifully turned out machines – some honest daily drivers. Some old, some new and a bit of everything in between. A good social event that has a bit of something for everyone!

A Jag KX (I believe) and Jack Kingstons beautiful 280SE Merc.

 A Jensen C – you don’t see to many of these around these days.

That stunning 280SE again.

The interior is just as good as the exterior!

All sorts of cars were represented and Cars and Coffee, a relatively new Merc, an MG and a Triumph in the background.

The bright work on the Triumph was in good condition.

The Triumph even had “dickie-seats” in the boot. You’ve got to love the rear wind shield to keep the bugs out of your teeth!


An Elise in great condition…

…which is clearly being driven regularly! That’s what I like to see! 🙂


Hillclimber, Paul O’Connell, even bought out the single seaters.

Paul finished second in the national championship in 2010 – having taken a year off, he’ll be out on the hills again this season.
See for details on Hillclimbing in Ireland.

Cars and Coffee is on the first Sunday of every month at Eastway Business Plaza (just off the Ballysimon Road), between 11am and 1pm. There are worse ways to spend a Sunday morning, believe me!

Part 2 coming soon – watch this space!

You can find more photos here!



In Photos: Ballyalban Hillclimb 2011
Motoring/Photography / May 10, 2011

In Photos: Ballyalban Hillclimb 2011

Round 4 of the Connaught Competition Engines Irish Hillclimb and Sprint Championship took place on the fearsome Ballyalban hill in Co. Clare last month. Ballyalban is the finest bit of Tarmac in Ireland – I’ve driven all of the Gaps and Passes on this Island, so I do feel that I’m qualified to make that statement. (more…)

Photography / November 15, 2010


Another from the challenge set by ivansantry – “A car at night”.

A HUGE thank you to Kevin – he answered at least one hundred questions from me while he explained the positioning and power of all four strobes used in this shot.

The car is a BMW E36 M3 as run in the National Hillclimb and Sprint Championship. The post title “354” is a reference to the class that I race in and the position I finished in last year. The 35 stands for Class 3B (unlimited saloons – anything goes power-wise) and the 4 is where I finished in the class in 2009. As it happens, after managing only five rounds of the championship this year, I finished in the same position, so I will be in Car 354 for 2011 again. Fingers crossed I’ll get out for a full season next year and finish a little further up the field.

M Power
Photography / November 11, 2010

M Power

The second in a series of shots from a challenge “A car at night.” set by ivansantry.

The Hot Seat
Photography / November 09, 2010

The Hot Seat

A few weeks back I did a series of shots based on a challenge set by Eyeblinks about “The street where I live” . Shortly aferwards, I was set a new challenge by ivansantry – “A car at night”. It took some time, but I finally got around to taking some shots of a BMW M3 as run in the National Hillclimb and Sprint Championship by my dad and I.

So this is the first in the series of shots, taking in the best (and only) seat in the house. And this is what the action looks like from the seat:

– Ivansantry for the challenge.
– There was a lot of learning involved in this one – a huge thanks to Kevin for the instruction and all the strobes, stands, transmitters, etc. Not alone did he provide everything, he also made it interesting, I have a major urge to buy another flash or two now. Damn you and your strobist ways!

2010 Circuit of Munster
Photography / June 08, 2010

2010 Circuit of Munster

After making a major breakthrough with work over the weekend (which earned me a well deserved break), I decided to get out to see a bit of the action at the Circuit of Munster – run by Limerick Motor Club.

I’m fortunate enough to live close to some of the stages, so after a short lie in, I made my way to a tight hairpin on SS2.

Photography Bit:
The weather was generally good, but massive clouds were racing across the sky – which made shooting an absolute PITA.  Fantastic Sun one minute, relative darkness the next – so you’ll notice the exposures below vary massively. I also got to grips with  my Circular Polarizer… not so easy to use on moving objects though.  You get rid of a certain amount of reflections, but because the cars are moving and they all have different lines for the bends, you get will get reflections in different places every time.

The Photos:
As usual, click to enlarge.

My token B&W shot for the day – Shadows of the spectators in the early morning Sun.

Kevin Barrett corrects a little too early as he attempts to exit the hairpin. He very nearly clipped the ditch on the exit, but got away without doing any damage at all.

Local man, Paul Purtill only knows one way – flat out. Drivers side mirror alreay knocked flat into the body – after a brush with a hedge no doubt.

John Danaher in his beautifully prepared S14 powered Compact. John was kind enough to let my dad and I have a good look at the car last year. Something else! Nice to see him going well.

Pat Price returning to the hairpin after he overshot.

Mike O’Connor sideways in his MKII.

No. 136 after missing the hairpin.

Marshals, Media and Spectators enjoy Sean Kennedy’s sideways antics in his AE86 Corolla. I’m not a Twin Cam fan, but there were two out in the Munster this year – both were flying and really entertaining to watch.

Benny Kennedy must have a great sense of humour with a bumper sticker like that on his Civic (click the image to enlarge).

After SS2, the weather looked to be improving and I really couldn’t face going back to work, so I decided to make my way over to Knocklong and on down to SS6. I found a great spot thanks to the Marshals! Nice.

Derek McGarrity on SS6.

A local kid watches McGarrity exit the junction.

I hope Liam Higgins’ sponsors “EasyFix” can sort out that rear wing for him.

Another local man, Ed Synan carrying some speed through the corner.

Yet another local man and regular Hillclimb competitor, Peter Cummins  in his beautiful Darrian T90. Nice to see Peter in action – normally I’m worrying about him on the time sheets. 😉 I have another shot of Peter on my old site: Click Here.

Eddy Kennelly in his spotless Escort.

As I said earlier, the Twin Cams were entertaining today. Mike Neligan gets it sideways to the delight of the Marshals.

Jack O’Shea in his bright red Mini.

Junior entrant, Chris Butler was the subject of an attempt at a pan/zoom shot. I kinda like it – because it’s different!

Feel free to contact me if you are interested in prints.

Coming Soon…
Motoring/Photography / May 08, 2010

Coming Soon…

My dad and I recently pulled the Avenger out of storage to get it ready for a few HRCA races this year. I went to see my parents yesterday evening and noticed the door of the garage was up – of course the Avenger caught my eye and I couldn’t resist taking a few photos.

When processing, I got to thinking of all the time spent in and around this car. My dad first started racing in it in the early ninties. It was always a competitive car – he upgraded to the current engine in the mid-ninties – a Chrysler BRM 1600cc Twin Cam 16v. An incredible spec considering it is nearly thirty years old. And it’s a very rare engine. Since the early ninties, he has been bringing the family (whoever was available at the time) to Hillclimbs, Sprints and Races all over the country. And I’ve been dragging my friends along to the same events for about as long.

The Blue Avenger, as it is referred to, has a long history here in Ireland – including a very successful hillclimb career. It’s a car that lots of people want to drive, but very few are allowed to.

This is much more than a car – I’d go so far as to say it is more like a family member. It may sound strange thing to say, but this particular car has brought family and friends together for twenty years now. I suppose the fact that it gets to sit on Carpet in the garage says a lot!

Given that the Blue Avenger has had such a big impact on me over the years, I’m hoping to do a Photo Story Board of the car over the next few months. Watch this space.

Photography / March 16, 2010


Another one from the archives! This is one of my many attempts at a self-portrait for a Limerick Camera Club challenge last November. I originally strayed away from this idea because I was limited to a 12×8 print – and it’s a crop that just didn’t suit the image (IMO).

Unfortunately I can’t say that the idea was my own – I got it from the cover of a book called “Crashed and Byrned“. Worth the read for the Motorsport heads – can be stomach turning in places, but it’s an interesting book about a very interesting character.

I’m not sure about the image or the processing. Any suggestions?

Photography / March 02, 2010


About the car:
When the DTM series ended in 1996, Mercedes-Benz wanted to find a replacement top-flight racing series. Enter the FIA GT Championship in which Mercedes-Benz campaigned their very successful and infamous CLK GTR.

It won everything around it. AMG-Mercedes won both the Driver and Team Championships in 1997 and 1998

We were very lucky growing up, we had Eurosport on satellite during the nineties. I was watching Le Mans live in 1999 when this happened:

That weekend, two CLK GTRs (technically they were CLK LMs, essentially the same car with a V8 instead of a V12) took flight – both spectacular. Unfortunately you can only win at Le Mans by going fast and going the distance… being spectacular will only win talent contests.

About the photo:
This is a shot of a 1:18 scale model of the GTR – I got it back in 1998 and it’s been sitting in a box for the last ten years or so. I found it a few weeks ago and thought it would be something different to try and capture.

The lighting was a bit of a nightmare, but it worked out ok. I had a black card under the model, a reflector above. I managed to bounce the on camera flash up onto the reflector and back down onto the car with a bit of trial and error. Here’s a shot of the setup, it’s not great, but it did the job: