Photo boss will be on the run

Already a veteran of one Olympic Winter Games

Denton part of Olympic coverage team for the 2010 Games

When they heard he was representing Black Press at the Winter Olympics, fellow staffers wondered aloud whether photographer Don Denton would be testing out the skeleton run.

All joking aside, the News’ photo supervisor will be too busy over the next two and a half weeks, dashing between the downtown media centre and venues sprinkled across the Lower Mainland, to enjoy much recreational activity.

Denton is part of a five-person team telling Games-related stories of Canadian athletes, volunteers and others whose hometowns or training bases are in communities covered by Black Press, publisher of the News.

“It’s going to be a challenge, but I’m sure it’s going to be a lot of fun,” Denton said before catching a ferry Thursday for the mainland.

He left his car behind, with an eye on using public transportation and designated media buses to get around.

It’ll be the second Olympics for the Calgary native, who covered the Calgary Games in 1988 for the Reuters news agency. He admits there are several key differences between the two events for a photographer, not least of which are the additional security and the longer travel distances between venues this time around.

“When you get down to the basics, it’s still about shooting sporting events, which I’ve done a lot of. But it’ll be a bit tricky shooting so many events in such a short period of time, in terms of the travel and the security.”

Where getting to Banff and Kananaskis from downtown Calgary was a relatively short drive, going from, say, the speed skating oval in Richmond to the ski slopes in Whistler could take anywhere from three to four hours.

“One big difference is that in Calgary, we were shooting film. You had to get it developed, get it printed then send it off. Whereas now, with digital, you just put your card in your laptop right after the event and e-mail the photos to the editor.”

Co-ordinating our unique Games coverage with Denton are photographer Jenna Hauck (Abbotsford News), reporters Kevin Mitchell (Vernon Morning Star) and Grant Grainger (North Shore Outlook) and editor Justin Beddall (North Shore Outlook).

Black Press staff in Greater Victoria are behind Denton all the way. They gave him a sendoff Tuesday, complete with a high-five lineup and the singing of “O Canada.”

“We’re very pleased that Don was selected to the team,” said Black Press South Island editorial director Kevin Laird. “He’s worked very hard to reach the level he’s at and I’m sure he’ll do us all proud.”

Olympics fans can find Games-related stories by visiting www.oakbaynews.com and clicking on the 2010 Winter Games coverage icon.

editor@oakbaynews.com