As some of you may or may not know, vurbmoto.com is a popular motocross news website. They focus hugely on being a media-friendly company (lots of photographers) as well as being really one-on-one with their viewers. Of all the moto-sites out there, this is the one that’s always been my dream to be published in. My biggest goal has always been to get my photo’s onto vurbmoto, and just the other day it finally happened.
A few weeks ago, my brother had a Quad X race down in San Bernardino, CA at Glen Helen Raceway. Quad X practice was on a Friday on the smaller track, while there was also a Showa Ride Day next door on the large track. I read that this was going to be the same day, and I even read a few of the teams that might show up, but come Friday morning I really had no idea what to expect. We arrived at the track around 9 A.M, and I immediately spotted the Monster Energy Pro Circuit Kawasaki semi parked by the snack shack. I was pretty excited to say the least, but upon second glance I realized it was actually the amateur team, not the top pro team.
After getting my camera and gear ready, I walked over to the pit area of the main track to see who else had showed up. As I walked through I saw the Troy Lee Designs semi along with the Rockstar Suzuki Amateur team rig. I was excited to see that Cole Seely and Travis Baker showed up in the Troy Lee area, so at least a couple pro’s showed up for sure.
I walked around the track a bit to get my camera setting dialed on the local-slow riders so I’d be ready for the big-guns to begin riding. After I felt that my setting were pretty much dialed I started to walk back to the smaller track to see how my brother was doing in his Quad X practice. On my way back I looked down the road before I crossed it to make sure nobody was going to hit me, and who should I see but my all-time favorite Lites class racer, Blake Baggett, in his lifted, flat black, badass truck. I stopped on the side of the road to get a few shots of him pulling into the pits and snapped a few more shots of his bike in the back of his truck with his new #12 numbers on it for 2012. I watched him drive down the pits passed the Troy Lee Team semi, before being stopped by a small group of kids laughing and talking to Blake. I don’t know exactly how the conversation went but I do know it ended with Blake playfully pinning his truck in neutral and sending plumes of dust shooting up from his exhaust before driving off.
As I walked from the Quad X practice back to the main track, I took a closer look through the pits to see if anyone else had showed up. To my happy surprise, I saw the familiar bike of Monster Kawi’s Amateur rider Dillan Epstein. Upon further investigation of the pits I saw a pretty confused-looking Darryn Durham changing in the back of his flat black stealth cargo van. I think he was probably confused as to why I was looking at him change, haha, but oh well.
I was very excited to get some pictures of Seely, Baker, Epstein, Durham, and most of all, Baggett. I clicked shot after shot and hoped some turned out pretty good. At this time I had no idea if anybody would even be interested in these photo’s, but if nothing else I was taking them so I could have some decent computer and iPhone backgrounds of pro riders for myself. After Quad X practice I was pretty bummed it was time to go, since the pro’s were still riding. But I knew we had to get things ready for my brothers race the next day and I was pretty confident I got some decent shots. On the ride to the hotel I was clicking throughout the 1,900 photos I took, and I knew that they were pretty damn good, so good that I had my sights set on getting them online.
I wasn’t sure where to begin in asking if anyone would like to use them. And the worst part of the whole thing was that the next day I saw Racer X and Supercross.com had some photo’s from the ride day already on Facebook. At this point I was still in San Bernardino, and couldn’t edit photo’s until I got home Sunday night. Needless to say next I’m buying a MacBook Pro so I can edit pictures the day of taking them not five days after-the-fact. It’s common sense that if you’re photo’s are done before other photographers, and they are good, you will be sure to get them in somewhere. When I got home I edited the hell out of the photo’s as soon as I possibly could and immediately as I hit “Export” checked all major motocross news outlets to see who did and did not have any photo’s from the Showa Ride Day. First I checked Vurb Moto. And to my luck and excitement there were no Showa Ride Day photo’s to speak of on either vurbmoto.com or Vurb Moto’s Facebook page. I quickly shot off an email to their Editor who’s email address I had from a few months back when I applied to be a Vurbmoto hired photographer (which I was denied, but told to keep in touch). The next morning, at 6 A.M (okay on a side note, every email I’ve ever got from him has been at the exact time each morning, and no matter when I replied to that email I wouldn’t receive a reply until the next morning at almost exactly 6 A.M, weird), I read that he was interested in the photo’s for either a Darkroom Gallery or as I suggested a Facebook Exclusive.
I received the mail he sent me at exactly 6:18 A.M and I had a reply (including a link to where he could save the photo’s for upload) by 6:23 A.M. I didn’t hear from him, but I kind of expected that after the first few hours because he said in his email he’d be leaving for the weekend by 9 A.M. So I waited patiently until the weekend was over, and even waited all of Monday to give him a chance to get caught up with everything. Finally Tuesday afternoon I decided to send another email to remind him and resend the link (I was a little skeptical that the email got to him, hence the re-send). I promptly woke up at 6 A.M for school, and immediately checked my email. Sure enough, 5 minutes earlier I received a reply saying to keep an eye out for my photo’s, he had them up on Vurbmoto.com.
Now, although I was extremely tired from it being 6 A.M and all, I’ve never been so happy from an email. As I ate my morning Eggo Waffles, I checked Vurbmoto’s Facebook to see a photo album titled “Showa Ride Day” and in the description of each photo seeing “Photography: Dylan Cole”. When it came time for me to get dressed for school, I immediately picked out my Vurbmoto T-Shirt to wear for the day in celebration.
After telling all the friends, and showing everyone that I could find the album on Facebook, I often got the reply “Bummer it’s on their Facebook and not vurbmoto.com”, to which I replied, “Hell, I don’t care if they were printed on an official vurbmoto toilet seat, if they’re on anything affiliated with VurbMoto I’m stoked!”.
Even more to my surprise, when I got home I went to vurbmoto.com to poke around the motocross world. I clicked their usual feature “Hot Links” to read the most up-to-date news. And boom, second article was a photo that I recognized, a photo of mine I took of Blake Baggett. Then I read the first few words of the article, “Dylan Cole recently headed out to the Showa Ride and came back with some cool imagery”. I was even more happy than my photo’s being on their Facebook.
Vurbmoto is the coolest, friendliest, and most visually appealing motocross website I’ve ever seen. THey will always be the first place I check with for any sort of Photo related work. I would like to thank the entire Vurbmoto staff, and a special thanks to editor Brent Stallo for allowing all this to happen to a tall 16 year old kid named Dylan Cole. Biggest photo-accomplishment of my entire life.
Vurb Moto’s Website: www.vurbmoto.com
Vurb Moto’s Facebook Page: www.facebook.com/vurbmoto
“Hot Links” Featuring my Photo’s: www.vurbmoto.com/blogs/vurb-hot-links/7394/
Specific Showa Ride Day Photo Gallery on Vurbmoto’s Facebook: Showa Ride Day Album
DylanColePhoto.com Full Ride Day Gallery: www.dylancolephoto.com