More than two weeks ago, I spent my entire weekend at the Mizzou Aquatics Center, where the fourth annual Missouri Grand Prix was going on for four days.
Eric Shanteau swims the championship heat of the 200-meter individual medley finals on the second day of the fourth annual Missouri Grand Prix.
I was there to help the assigned Columbia Missourian photographers — most of whom had never before shot swimming, which I think is one of the more technical, difficult sports to photograph — and edit and submit their photos to the newsroom. But I also had plenty of time to make pictures, so I made full use of this opportunity.
Unfortunately, my portable hard drive crashed just 10 minutes after I’d submitted the photographer’s photos in my last editing shift on Feb. 14. This meant I lost all these photos, and more — until I sent the drive to the data recovery company. Hence, the delay in posting these Grand Prix photos.
View from the diving tower.
Of course, there were many other photographers there, so trying to find angles and content that nobody else was getting was practically impossible. But it was a good challenge, and considering this was my first time at a big swim meet, I’m pleased with how my photos turned out.
This year was also the first year — in my memory — that Michael Phelps, Katie Hoff and a few other big names were not in competition. Due to the snowstorms that were pummeling the east coast at the time, the North Baltimore Aquatic Club swimmers scheduled to compete (including Phelps and Hoff) were unable to attend. Almost every other photographer I know was disappointed about this, but I frankly didn’t mind. I even tweeted, “Oh boo hoo, no Michael Phelps at the MO Grand Prix. There will still be incredible swimmers in the pool too, you know.”
So I, for one, enjoyed not having to stress about getting Michael Phelps photos. And I had fun. Enjoy some photos:
Missouri swimmer Jowan Qupty prepares to compete in the second heat of the 200-meter breakstroke finals.
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