Though his parents were involved in racing before he was born, the family continued to visit the tracks till he was 10 years old. He had picked up a Pentax when he was six, so racing and car photos were a natural result.
There was brief detour into computers when he was a teen, leading a computer job. But the lull of the track was too strong, and he was back at the photography for Insight F1 covering Formule Renault 2 litre, F3 and Formula Renault 3.5 litre (World Series by Renault) in the Dutch, German and European Championships.
In 2008, Dirk established his own company. Since then, his photography has seen light in Octane (UK), Red Racing Green (Belgium), Het Automobiel Klassieker (Holland), Classic Motorsport (USA) magazines, not to mention Autoweek and Carros (Holland), with upcoming features Hotrod (USA), RuoteClassiche (Italy), Art of Living (Holland) and again in Octane. Work has also come from auction houses such as Bonhams, RM and Articurial.
Dirk’s reputation for quality is well known, so he is being sought out.
“This year, I've received some magazine-commissioned work as well, where they just said we want that car, go find it and shoot it. That's also one of the big thrills of course, the hunt for a car and managing to "acquire" the car for a shoot.”
So if you find yourself at a top-notch international automotive event, look around for the most interesting venue; you’ll probably find Dirk there too!
Belgian artist and friend Nicolas Cancelier thought that we should start an international group of automotive artists who like to chat, exchange ideas, exhibit their art together, and share a meal after events.
At the Nurburgring track, bad weather delayed this important race by a few hours.
Mercedes-Benz was making its first official entry into the Grand Prix season at this event after extensive testing and adjustment of the new W25.
Team manager Alfred Neubauer was feeling the pressure to succeed in their homeland. Their star driver had not yet fully recovered enough from his 1933 Monaco crash to participate so Mercedes brought in a new driver Manfred Georg Rudolf von Brauchitsch, along with Luigi Fagioli to drive their new racer.
Original art & limited editions available. Auto Union had Hans Stuck, Hermann zu Leiningen and August "Bubi" Momberger to drive their Type A.
Scuderia Ferrari had Louis Chiron and Mario Tadini driving the Alfa Romeo P3. Bugatti had no entries in the race, and nor did Maserati.
Three classes of cars were racing together, flagged off one class after another, a total of forty-four cars in all.
Italian Fagioli took an early lead until he was ordered by team manager Neubauer to let his German teammate von Brauchitsch by. Later in the pits for fueling, Fagioli argued furiously with Neubauer over this. He started off again, but with only one lap remaining in the race, he pulled over and abandoned his race car in protest.
With two Auto Unions out of the race, Stuck had taken the sole remaining Type A to a sizeable lead over von Brauchitsch. Some believed he would go non-stop and win the race. He finally did have to come in for fuel and tires, and the Mercedes driver took the lead, which he would keep to the checkered flag.
The win was a stunning debut for both the Mercedes-Benz team and their new driver.
Race enthusiast had great expectations for the Belgian Grand Prix, held on the stunning Spa-Francorchamps track.
Unfortunately, Belgian customs officials demanded a heavy duty from the German Grand Prix teams for their alcohol-based racing fuel. The result was a withdrawal of both the Mercedes-Benz and the Auto Union teams from the race.
This made for a very small grid of seven cars; three Bugatti T59s, two Alfa Romeo P3s, a Maserati 8CM and a Montier-Ford Special.
The Italian Grand Prix was held on September 9th at the Autodromo Di Monza. In the previous year’s Grand Prix, serious accidents had taken the lives of Giuseppe Campari and two other drivers. To lessen the speeds, it was decided that the track should be shortened from 10kms to 4.3kms, with many chicanes added in. With 500kms to cover for the Grand Prix, this made for a longer, more grueling race.
Mercedes had their W25, Bugatti their Type 59, Scuderia Ferrari the Alfa P3, while Maserati introduced the new model 6C-34, to be driven by Tazio Nuvolari. The balance of their team would drive the 8CMs.
At the start, Hans Stuck took an early lead for Auto Union but was soon overtaken by Mercedes driver Rudolf Caracciola. His teammate Manfred Georg Rudolf von Brauchitsch was not competing, having been injured in a crash at the previous Swiss Grand Prix. Battling amongst the leaders were Luigi Fagioli (Mercedes), Archille Varzi (Alfa Romeo), Nuvolari (Maserati) and Count Carlo Felice Trossi (Alfa Romeo).
Unfortunately for Nuvolari, the Maserati mechanics forgot to top-up his car's brake fluid after weigh-in, so he slowly lost his brakes during the long race.
The 4.75 hour race, with it’s 1600 total corners, took a toll on the drivers and the cars. Fagioli, whose car broke down, later replaced Caracciola, who had to be lifted out of his car. Stuck had to be replaced by zu Leiningen, and Trossi by Comotti.
Varzi dropped out with mechanical woes, so the race finished with Caracciola/Figioli in first place, Stuck/zu Leiningen in second, with Trossi/Comotti in third. After 4th place Chiron (Alfa Romeo), Nuvolari finished a respectable 5th place, using his gears to brake for the last half of the race.
Born in 1944, François Cevert (née Goldenberg) was a well-liked and talented French Formula 1 and Sports/GT driver.
He began his motorsports career on two wheels, but switched to Formula 3 in 1966. In 1968, Cevert took the French Formula 3 Championship.
For 1969, Cevert moved up to Formula 2, and finished third in the Championship. While in F2, his capabilities captured the notice of (Sir) Jackie Stewart, who encouraged Ken Tyrrell to consider Cevert for the team. Tyrrell took his advice and signed Cevert up for 1970.
Cevert’s year had been very good too, with six 2nd place finishes, but in the very last race of the year at Watkins Glen on October 6th, his Tyrrell 006 crashed horribly during Saturday morning qualifying, and this shining star with the striking blue eyes was extinquished.
This talented and popular pianist and race car driver will never be forgotten by his fans and his peers.
A recent Twitter follower reminded me that we are only 23 days away from the 23rd running of the legendary La Carrera Panamericana, the famous Mexican road race.
The original race ran from 1950 to 1954, then started again in 1988. This year it runs from October 22nd to the 28th.
The race runs for nearly 2000 miles along public roads, starting in Tuxtla Gutierrez and finishing north 7 days later in Zacatecas.
Many famous drivers have competed in the '50s races, guys like Hershel McGriff winning the inaugural event in 1950 driving an Oldsmobile 88, and Juan Manuel Fangio, who won in 1953 driving a Lancia D24.
The banked Avus track was known for it’s high speed, so Ferrari commissioned Cesare Pallavicino from the Breda Aircraft Company to design a streamline body for one of the Alfa Romeo P3’s. “Guy” Moll would drive this special “Aerodinamica” for Scuderia Ferrari.
Before the race, the Mercedes W25’s were withdrawn with fuel pump problems. With rain falling at the start of the race, the Auto Union Type-A of Hans Stuck quickly took the lead.
As the rain stopped and the track dried, Moll started catching the leaders. He passed teammates Varzi, then Chiron, who later dropped out with a broken oil pipe. He then took the lead from Stuck, who lasted only two more laps before his clutch failed.
With almost a minute and a half lead over the second place Varzi, Moll took the race, much to the chagrin of the Stuck’s hometown crowd.
Sadly, this fine driver lost his life at the Coppa Acerbo in August of the same season.