This month I attended Motocross of Nations at Matterley Basin. For my first time attempting to shoot motocross, I took the Sony a6500 and the 100-400mm 4.5-5.6 GM lens along with me. It turned out to be a brilliant event and a new photographic challenge.

All images that you will see throughout this article are SOOC (Straight Out of the Camera) JPEG’s. If I do any post editing to images I will always make this clear.

**Note: Full resolution JPEG images are available to download, but the RAW files are password protected to help keep my hosting costs sensible. However, I do provide the username/password to all members of my monthly newsletter. All images are copyright protected and may be used for personal use only.

Yamaha Motocross taken with Sony a6500 and SEL100400GM Lens

259mm | 1/1000 sec | f/5.6 | ISO 200 | **Full Resolution Download: JPEG | RAW

Yamaha Motocross taken with Sony a6500 and SEL100400GM Lens

348mm | 1/1250 sec | f/5.6 | ISO 400 | **Full Resolution Download: JPEG | RAW

Yamaha Motocross taken with Sony a6500 and SEL100400GM Lens

179mm | 1/1000 sec | f/5.6 | ISO 320 | **Full Resolution Download: JPEG | RAW

Yamaha Motocross taken with Sony a6500 and SEL100400GM Lens

400mm | 1/500 sec | f/5.6 | ISO 1000 | **Full Resolution Download: JPEG | RAW

Motocross of Nations taken with Sony a6500 and SEL100400GM Lens

169mm | 1/1000 sec | f/5.6 | ISO 800 | **Full Resolution Download: JPEG | RAW

KTM Motocross taken with Sony a6500 and SEL100400GM Lens

400mm | 1/1000 sec | f/5.6 | ISO 800 | **Full Resolution Download: JPEG | RAW

Kawasaki Motocross taken with Sony a6500 and SEL100400GM Lens

400mm | 1/1000 sec | f/5.6 | ISO 320 | **Full Resolution Download: JPEG | RAW

Kawasaki Motocross taken with Sony a6500 and SEL100400GM Lens

152mm | 1/1600 sec | f/7.1 | ISO 1250 | **Full Resolution Download: JPEG | RAW

Kawasaki Motocross taken with Sony a6500 and SEL100400GM Lens

271mm | 1/1000 sec | f/5.6 | ISO 320 | **Full Resolution Download: JPEG | RAW

Kawasaki Motocross taken with Sony a6500 and SEL100400GM Lens

318mm | 1/1000 sec | f/5.6 | ISO 500 | **Full Resolution Download: JPEG | RAW

Honda Motocross taken with Sony a6500 and SEL100400GM Lens

400mm | 1/1000 sec | f/5.6 | ISO 500 | **Full Resolution Download: JPEG | RAW

Matterley Basin Motocross taken with Sony a6500 and SEL100400GM Lens

400mm | 1/1000 sec | f/5.6 | ISO 400 | **Full Resolution Download: JPEG | RAW

I initially thought that the 100-400mm focal length would be overkill here, and everything I had read previous to this event suggested using a 70-200mm lens as you would be able to get close to the action. However, due to the size of the crowds and not being overly keen on fighting for position on the crowdline, I decided to keep my distance and make full use of the focal length I had to play with.

The camera and lens combo worked flawlessly. I was able to pick up details like the riders eyes with ease, or freeze the dirt thrown up from the wheels. I’ve never photographed jumps before and found this to quite the challenge, especially if I was in front of the jump and couldn’t focus on the rider until they were already in the air. I nailed some shots but missed many, this is definitely something I need to work on.

Most of my shots were captured using a shutter speed of 1/500 sec or above to make sure that I froze the action. In hindsight I should have played around with some slower shutter speeds to generate a little more motion blur, I guess that’s something for next time now.

Unfortunately it’s the end of the motocross season here, but I’ll certainly be attending more events in 2018. I’ll most likely take along the 100-400mm GM again, but will also take the Sony FE 70-200mm F4 for if I can get a little closer to the action, and maybe even the Sony FE 24-70mm F4.

If you also love shooting motocross or any other sport with your Sony Alpha camera, then I’ve setup the Sony Alpha Sports Shooters Group on Facebook where you can share your photos with fellow sports shooters.

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