wanting to give my refurbished 7D a workout, I went to a local rodeo a week ago. This was my first time at a rodeo, and i found that the high fence made it necessary to shoot thru the rails. The bleachers were too low to get a view over the fence, and Icould not just walk up to it.
That was a challege to the AF that was overcome by using spot AF to keep the camera from locking onto the fence. The rodeo started at 7:30 pm, and the sun was low with strong shadows at first. then, as the sun went down, the arena lighting was pretty dim, so I kept increasing the ISO, finally switching to my 85mm f/1.8 prime. I also lowered shutter speed, but it had to remain fairly high due to the very fast action. By the end of the show, I was at ISO 4000.
I was pleased by the autofocus performance of the 7d. The only out of focus images happened while panning the camera so that a fence rail was picked up. The riders can really move, and when headed straight at me, the camera tracked them perfectly. High ISO performance of the 7d is one area where it does have a limit, ISO 3200 use requires a perfect exposure, and that was not possible with the low light, so there were a lot of under exposed images that had to be pushed.
Here are a few samples.
Barrel racer charging hard straight at me, tracked perfectly.
Bull riders have to be slightly crazy. end of the show, so High ISO and loss of detail.