Sport and photography go hand in hand. Our desire to etch our best efforts into the record books also drives us to record our efforts in other ways – to smile at a mounting pile of well-loved but worn-out shoes, to clock our miles religiously as we charge toward our yearly goal and to reach for our camera so we have a snapshot of the journey to look back on. A good photo does more than capture the moment, it serves as a mini-time capsule, reminding us of the feelings and sensations of that day. And transporting the viewer into the story too.
This year we got over 30,000 entries to the photo contest– thank you to everyone who shared a snapshot of their year with us. These are the photos that stood out to our panel of professional photographers. We hope they give you a reminder of your own 2020 highlights and get you dreaming of the promise of adventure in 2021.
Pavement winner: Jenna Leigh
"2020 was not a year of far-flung adventures. It was the year we learned to appreciate what’s close to home. Of all the roads I’ve ridden, it’s hard to believe that some of the toughest miles have been right here in Britain. This is from a cold, wet and windy day that combined Park Rash, Oxnop Scar, Buttertubs and Fleet Moss in the Yorkshire Dales. It was the kind of day where getting to the top wasn’t even the greatest achievement, instead it was coming up against that moment when you want to quit, but pushing past it."
Off-road winner: Austin O'Connor
"I was having the trip of a lifetime. I'd never been to Yosemite before, and after three straight days of grueling hikes, my knees needed a bit of a break. I decided to hike to Taft Point for a bit less strain, and all of a sudden there it was - the photo op of a lifetime. I'd imagined that my best photos would come from the most remote, off-the-beaten-path areas of the park, but I quickly realized all it took was a bit of luck (and some atmospheric help from the sunset and the smoke) for the perfect shot. The feeling of elation while shooting a photo like this is unmatched."
Portrait winner: Loury Lagardere
"In action at the North Pole."
Pavement runner-up: Ron Short
"One of my daily cycling self portrait photos taken by setting a timer on my camera. I especially enjoy the morning sunrise, it represents a chance to improve everyday."
Off-road runner-up: Jesse Lieman-Sifry
"Moon, mountain biker, famous Sedona landmark. Pick any two of three and it's a difficult shot to plan. Pick all three and you'll spend a week biking, exploring, and 'cactus-whacking' to increasingly esoteric spots with a telephoto lens, staring at Google Earth, Trailforks, and PhotoPills for hours, alternating 'this might not be possible' with 'ok let me just try one more spot', drawing stick figures into test shots to imagine what success could look like, taking countless agave spikes to the shins**, recruiting some friends, and communicating with them via walkie talkie from half a mile away. I think it was worth it! 😄
** No agave plants or cacti were injured in the taking of this photo, only me 😂 "
Portrait runner-up: Brenden Clarke
"Following a 20 mile run around Manhattan, I took this image of my friend David. This was the first time I had ridden the subway in months and it really reinforced the 'new normal' we are living in."
Head over to our Instagram to see more incredible photography from the contest.
Thanks to Garmin and Jaybird for providing the prizes and our panel of judges – Jason Suarez, Pauline Ballet, Chris Burkard, Jojo Harper and Sho Fujimaki – for taking the time to review the entries and select the winners.