Runner Takes Selfie, Photographer Wins Award

>> Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Have you heard about this? It's kind of awesome.

Both Runner's World and PetaPixel have shared the story of a high school cross country runner who sprinted hard at the start of a cross country race only to snap a selfie in front of the pack:

Full photo.


Photographer Troy Wayrynen was the person who made the photo above, and it was recently selected as the 1st Prize winner of the "Sports Feature" category in this year’s "Best of Photojournalism" contest by the National Press Photographers Association (NPPA), which is a very prestigious award for photojournalists.

The runner was 17-year-old Jacob Gillingham, a junior at Skyview High School in Vancouver, Washington, who sprinted ahead of the pack to snap the photo - "not such a good idea," Jacob says after the race. Wayrynen was in just the right place at the right time, and captured a photo of Jacob the same moment the runner snapped a photo of himself. Jacob later shared his image through his Instagram account:

Caption: "But first, let me take a selfie #XC #firstplace #RollStorm #overall61 #worthit #selfie"

Runner’s World reports that the winning photograph was actually one of Wayrynen’s outtakes from that day. It was never officially published, but the photojournalist decided to submit it to the NPPA contest. Wayrynen tells Runner’s World that he believes the photograph to be "a sign of our times," and that it's "interesting and humorous at some level."

If you're wondering about the runner... Jacob explained that the event was "more for fun than competitive," as some of the team’s top runners weren't racing so they could rest for the team’s upcoming district meet. It was one of Gillingham’s teammates who gave him the idea. "I immediately got excited about the idea and offered to do it," Jacob said.

The other Skyview runners knew about the idea, but the coaches did not. "The coaches were supportive after they saw what was going on," Jacob said. "They thought it was funny but did say that I wouldn’t get away with that at any other race." The selfie didn't take much time, but sprinting that hard out of the gate to snap that photo took it's toll on the runner, who ended up 61st out of 81.

Photographer Wayrynen didn’t expect to take an award-winning shot that day while covering the event for the "Outlook" newspaper, but it ended up being one of his most rewarding photos. "That’s the wonderful thing about sports photography," he said. "You just don’t know what to expect."


The Track Hack 9:49 AM, April 15, 2015  

so....another candidate for the Self Promotion Hall of Fame...

SteveQ 10:08 AM, April 15, 2015  

If one of my athletes did that, he'd have to walk home from the meet.

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