Back in Baku (Azerbaijan) I had the chance to play around as a sport photographer, while working with Andrew Connelly on a very interesting sport and politics story during the First (and maybe last) European Games. We were interested in the participation of Armenia in the games, since the country is at war with Azerbaijan since 1991, and we had to follow all the competitions in which Armenia excels, mostly fighting sports but I manage to watch some other sports I normally enjoy on tv.
To take pictures at sport events is quite challenging, you have to deal with terrible backgrounds and fight for the best photo position. As for everything, more the knowledge of what you are photographing and better the results. The rapidity of the action and the distance between your placement and the athletes often required the most expensive equipment. It is fun to be there but often I thought it would be nicer to watch it on tv, by watching it in the viewfinder and by focusing on certain moments that you want to photograph, you miss the overall beauty of the act.
You can find the story about the conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan seen through the “apolitical” world of sport on Spiegel and Politico for the moment. Hopefully it will be published in a more complete version soon.