I am a customer/friend/aquantance of Paul Henshall, and have been busy with rally stuff for the last four years. As a consuquence, I have heard of you, and perhaps even met you at some point, though only in passing. I know I have done some of your mini rallies.
That I got Sylvain Erickson's car (the first one) that well makes me happy, he's a madman, and the car is all over the place. As for sponsors, yes, not a great shot, btu I have seen so many photos that would satisfy a sponsor, that something different also ads to the appeal.
The "spectator" in the other shot is actually photographer Andrew Harvey, toughing it out well beyond what any spectator would do. Andrew and I work together on projects here and there, as I do freelance writing. We do have one long running project - Flatovercrest.com
- which Andrew shoots for and I write for. At Baie, Andrew was kind enough to loan me what is now his third body, to try my hand at Digi. Though I still shoot film, when money permits, I will be getting a digi body (hopefully by Christmas) As I am sure you are well aware, the ability to take LOTS of pictures helps tremendously at a rally. I shot over 600 photos in two days at Baie. Normally, weather is not so much of a deterrant, but when it's hailing in July, and I don't HAVE to be out in it, I'll seek some shelter.
Now to Baie itself... It's worth the trip. A very compact event, the most far flung stages are within 15-20kms, and the scenery is amazing. There are lots of Quebec competitors (of course) and a healthy attendance from New England as well. I say it's my favourite event, then I think of any other that I've been to and I just can't decide!
As a long time participant in the Ontario Rally scene (past-pres of MLRC) I know from 1st hand experience how difficult it is to photograph rally. The faster and frequently, but not always, most interesting cars come first in the order, and they may only come by once. So you may only get one chance at a shot.
I have worked events in all kinds of weather. Congrats for sticking it out that day. For me, heat and dust are far, far worse than mud, rain, snow or ice. You can dress and plan for all of those. With heat and dust, you only suffer.
As a rally mood scene, I like the first a lot. The sponsor logos don't show up so the teams and event organizers may not be able to use the photo for their marketing purposes, but the driver might like it for his personal collection. As do you, I suspect.
In a tighter crop, sans wet spectator, the second shot could be a good publicity shot or for use in an ad bragging about car toughness, say.
I have been meaning to spectate the Baie, but somehow never made it yet.