FINAL ROUND: 2016 Photo of the Year - $10,000 Cash Prizing

Feb 13, 2017 at 9:37
by Pinkbike Staff  
Well, here we are. More than 270,000 votes and we're down to the final two. Who takes home the larger piece of the $10,000 in CASH available from our sponsor: SRAM is entirely up to you.

Check out the voting page

Photo of the Year 2016 Powered by SRAM

The 6th annual Pinkbike Photo of the Year Contest voting is now well underway. Below are the Semi-Final matchups and who won each after the votes were cast. Once you see whether your favorites made it through, head on over to the voting page and cast your votes for the final round!

The winner of the contest will join John Wellburn, Toby Cowley, Sterling Lorence, Christoph Laue and Sean Lee in the PB Photo of the Year Hall of Fame and they could walk away with $5,000.

Vote in the Final Round

Matchup 1

that moment when you realize you re too close but it s worth it... Rider Nicola Pescetto
51.9% Bartek Wolinski

Images by Margus Riga for the Tippie Doerfling and Stowards Generations - Video and Photo Epic
Margus Riga 48.1%

Matchup 2

KC Deane and Geoff Gulevich in rsm rk Iceland underneath a spectactular Northern Lights show. The town of Reykjavik even demanded all lights be shut off in the city during this night due to the intensity of the showing here. Our crew went to Iceland with a vision to riding under the Northern Lights and we continually got shut down by weather. We photographed this the last night we were there on a 10 day trip and only saw the lights for two nights at the end of our trip departing our journey beneath a river of green in the skies.
41.2% Paris Gore

Jungle magic on La Palma.
Steve Shannon 58.8%

Go Vote in the Final Round

What's at stake? $10,000 Cash
Winner will receive a check for $5000
• Runner-up will receive a check for $3000
• Other semi-finalists will each receive $1000

Thanks to SRAM.

Photo of the Year 2016 Powered by SRAM

Mentions: @SramMedia


  • 305 20
 Sweet Jesus, not the roost
  • 218 31

For next year can we please put a requirement that anyone under the age of 18 cannot vote past the 2nd round? Good friggen jesus christ. Its like the 2016 presidential elections all over again. He's even looking at the camera showing an incredibly bad staged f*cking shot. You kids are f*cking idiots!
  • 39 8
 @scott-townes: I didn't vote for the roost shot
  • 19 2
 @scott-townes: Not like you to get all hot under the collar Scott.

What was that JC said (allegedly)... "Forgive the little children; they know not what they do"
  • 44 20
 @scott-townes: hearing you whine and complain like a two year old almost makes me want to vote for the roost shot
  • 76 6
 Sweet Jesus how did the aurora get voted out
  • 23 1
 next year the entire field will be roost shots ......
  • 10 37
flag morcombemedia (Feb 13, 2017 at 16:12) (Below Threshold)
 Look they're both sick shots everyone shut the fuck up and agree you couldn't take either of them
  • 49 13
 To be honest though, the other finalist isn't THAT great either.
  • 9 0
 Is a good photo but the other picture is beautiful and that trail is awesome, looks very challenging.
  • 5 2
 @morcombemedia: I didn't either and I'm not 18 yay
  • 18 3
 @orientdave: I support 20th-36th term abortions because of contests like this.
  • 9 1
 this is so sad
  • 7 0
 @scott-townes: I'll give you that Scott, that made me chuckle!

Have a gold day...

and just in case, before anyone starts accusing Scott of telling women what they can do with their bodies, ask him if he was serious. Remember to be polite people, uncle Felton is watching, fearing he will have another Palm to Forehead moment soon.
  • 17 3
 @scott-townes: another 17 year old here, never voted for the roost shot. Actually wanted Laue's Superman to take it (amazingly perfect timing, light, composition) or Gores Aurora (sheer beauty of nature).
  • 25 8
 @morcombemedia: literally any one could take that roost shot.
Step 1. Build small berm
Step 2. Pile up loose dirt on bottom of berm
Step 3. Get out cell phone
Step 4. Have friend ride straight into berm and slam on rear brake while mugging camera
Step 5. Apparently profit?
  • 13 8
 Ha ha that's almost exactly what I said to myself: OH Jesus, not the roost shot... It's like we elected Trump all over again.
  • 24 8
 The roost shot is basically trump
  • 32 1
 Next year there can be a roost-off and then the actual photo competition.
  • 5 2
 @NRogers27: yeah with no roosts aloud tup that would be a lot more interesting
  • 5 2
 Let's skip all this and next year have bike of the year contest. 32 of the best pro bikes. 10K goes to the wrench crew that keeps it going. 'cause that wont cause nearly as much as roost or not....
  • 6 3
 We too roost to die
  • 14 1
 Yep, life is unfair. Your wife's cheating on you with the gardener, the dumbest one in your class earns more money than you, your dog doesn't even greet you when you get home, your son doesn't like your old Metallica albums and spends the whole day listening to fucking pop music, and on top of that another roost shot is going to win your favorite annual photo contest. Hey, but anyone over the age of 18 should know this.
  • 3 2
 Steve Shannon has it easy. Look at the colour and depth and the composition and the rays! No way will the roost shot win.
  • 3 1
 This contest is trash... fuck....
  • 5 1
 seriously... every year I'm disappointed with this contest, all the good photos that took tons of prep work are cast away and we end up with this crap!
  • 4 1
 I felt the same exact way, There were so many good shots and they all got voted out for this BS. Not saying it isn't good but photo of the year?
  • 4 4
 keep in mind guys, the main reason for the roost shot doing so well is because the people behind it have a large media presence and get a lot of people to vote for it, rather than unbiased people who choose a shot on the quality and artistic nature of it. I have seen loads of posts by riders asking for people to vote for the roost, and none for any other shots
  • 5 0

I feel like if the roost shot wins, I might as well delete my PB account as this place has nothing more for me.
  • 2 5
 comments are increasingly looking like european or american media, bitching all the time about someone democratically elected. Nothing like an old nice tyranny, right?
  • 2 0
 @Benito-Camelas: i would feel sorry Bartek in this awkward situation :/
  • 3 7
flag marceldh19 (Feb 14, 2017 at 11:36) (Below Threshold)
 better old school roost on freeride bike, than everything on all mtn
  • 5 9
flag JasPeR314159 (Feb 14, 2017 at 13:30) (Below Threshold)
 @scott-townes: I'm 23 and I voted for the roost shot. It looks good, the shot is well taken, it captures mountain biking as I see it. This doesn't mean that the other shots weren't good though. I just liked this better then the other boring trail shots.
  • 4 1
 @scott-townes: If that roost shot wins we'll call for a yuge investigation into fraudulent underage voters. Sad.
  • 3 0
 @JasPeR314159: No, it just means you can be a f*cking idiot at any age. number44- I agree. SAD!
  • 1 3
 if you remove all dirt, photo will be still great
  • 1 0
 @scott-townes: I agree, I did not vote for it once. Exept for the final round because its opponent shows zero biking skill.
  • 114 11
 Am I the only one who's a little bummed the northern lights picture didn't win?
  • 40 4
 Don't get me wrong, I think it's a cool shot but Shannon's shot just captures the essence of riding for me better.
  • 8 2
 It sucks that those two had to be pitted against each other at this stage. Both are amazing shots. Timing had to be right and nature had to play its part as well.
  • 6 13
flag shortcuttomoncton (Feb 13, 2017 at 18:30) (Below Threshold)
 Not really. That was a great shot but honestly both of these are far better in every way in my opinion. The greatest roost shot ever vs. the picture that most makes me want to go ride my bike? Great finals.
  • 11 0
 I really love the northern lights photo too,for me the best this year!
  • 9 1
 I feel sorry for Margus Riga, but I guess nobody should be surprised, it's the same shit every year, kids playing call of duty vote for the picture with a dust explosion, "photography enthusiasts " vote for pictures that have nice colors/ are technically hard to take/ or innovative and so on... Pb population doesn't change, so the same pictures are chosen every year.
  • 6 1
 @OnkleJoachim: Yep i'm with you on that. The other three are pretty impressive compositions, and yes the roost does capture something about the raw thrill, though Shannon's shot really draws me in. Its the one that makes me wish i wasn't stuck at this keyboard, but on that exact trail.
  • 3 0
 sure do. its a once in a lifetime experience.....
  • 3 0
 Christoph Laue's photo is incredible, same with the northern lights one, and Margus Riga's. Steve Shannon's place is well deserved too but not sure about the roost shot :/
  • 2 1
 @zede: I vote for what connects with me. I don't ever vote for roost shots. Although I appreciate the skill, I don't vote for urban shots. I ride to get out of the city.
  • 1 0
 @rrolly: You're right. The roost shot was clearly taken in the city center!!
  • 1 0
 @cpgang: haha - either, I don't vote for urban shots "either."
  • 94 7
 "hey, can you flick some dirt in the air with your rear tire? I want to get POY this year..."
  • 19 6
 More like, "Yo man, I'll be here with the camera. Just side slash in front of me and I'll use rapid pics to get a sick shot of dirt flying around. 10k in the bag!"
  • 4 2
  • 7 1
 Photo of the year should be 'Best photo, considering technical aspects, artistic and depth' Not 'How cool can someone look in one frame'. The roost shot is pretty good, but that's all i see. A guy sliding into a berm. The other shot has depth and is interesting.
  • 2 2
 is a joke
  • 1 4
 @torero: Don't worry i'm not autistic
  • 55 2
 Really? As nice as the roost shot is.. it's pretty generic and overdone now. There were some far more interesting photos in there!

But hey, I guess a roost photo will appeal to the masses.
  • 3 1
 totally agree...
  • 12 1
 Yeah I was surprised when shots like the fire-riding one didn't make it anywhere. Either way the final photo should be good Smile
  • 46 1
 Gotta say I'm surprised these are the top four. Except for the roost. Not surprised, just disappointed with that one. Kudos to all the nominees, some insane photos.
  • 3 0
 Yeah, I voted each round, but I had to change my mind a lot as my picks got eliminated... Frown
  • 25 3
 "I don't know who you are. I don't know what you want but if you are looking to vote Bartek Wolinski I can tell you, you better think twice. I have are a very particular set of biking skills.
Skills I have acquired over a very long riding career.
Skills that make me a nightmare for people who vote like you.
So, if you vote for Steve Shannon now, that'll be the end of it.
I will not look for you, I will not pursue you, but if you vote for Wolinski's roost shot, I will look for you... I will find you and I WILL revoke your PB membership permanently."
  • 21 2
 And the Pinkbike fail of the year award goes to ....the Pinkbike Photo of the Year Contest!
  • 16 2
 A roost shot??!! Seriously? Of all the beautiful and epic photos that have been put out this year a roost shot can hardly qualify. Not to say that it didn't take work to shoot it. Not saying that it isn't a great bit of riding and timing. Not saying it's not fun to roost corners. Just saying it's cliche in a Mtb photo. Pink bike voters are showing stays as juveniles here.
  • 5 1
 Roosting damages trails. When did we become so ignorant?
  • 17 2
 To the people complaining about other people complaining: it IS a big deal when there is $10,000 on the line and photography has zero value in a photography contest
  • 18 5
 Just remember kids, there's no electoral college here, so if you don't agree with the vote you are in the minority. More than half of us here don't want to hear you complain about it.
  • 12 2
 If the picture I like doesn't win will they cancel classes for a grieving period?
  • 6 0
 Just remember kids, this is the PB electorate here, not a contest judged by photographers.

So, who honestly thought the roost shot wouldn't make it at least this far, regardless of whether you like it?

Personally, it doesn't talk to me at all, but I see how many "bears of little brain" would.

Oh, and just to pre-empt some who don't get the reference, the "bear of little brain" is a reference to Winnie the Pooh
  • 3 4
 So that's Trump roosting the corner?
  • 18 4
 I have this feeling that I'm going to feel exactly as I did after the Brexit vote and US election results when this competition concludes.....
  • 4 19
flag shredderIII (Feb 13, 2017 at 16:08) (Below Threshold)
 you live in Japan why would you care
  • 27 2
 @shredderIII: because firstly I am a British Citizen living in my adopted home for a couple of decades, and like it or not, the election results in the US and similarly sized economies affect us all Sir and the life choices we face in this life. Regardless of where you live.
  • 5 13
flag shredderIII (Feb 13, 2017 at 17:37) (Below Threshold)
 @orientdave: fair enough but I don't see how both of those events comming to pass are bad things
  • 4 2
 @shredderIII: sure, there are people on both sides of the fence as it were. Enjoy the day!
  • 3 4
 @orientdave: you too brah
  • 4 7
 Yeah they both felt amazing!
  • 6 3
 @ToonGTX: so true but let's drop this subject Pinkbike ain't a political forum
  • 12 2
 not that either of these shots are bad, although the roost shot borderline is because of how un creative and easy to take it is... but honestly there were many more deserving shots than these two... utterly dissapointing
  • 8 0
 @Pinkbike There's clearly a lot of disagreement here on which shot is 'best' and whether we should look at the technical aspects of the shot or just what appeals to us personally. Any chance that next year you could get a quick caption from each of the photographers and/or an expert giving their story of how the shot was taken, the technical challenges they faced, and what it is about the photo that they like most? I'm sure it would interest a lot of the PB audience and may give those of us who are an uneducated audience when it comes to photography an insight. Thanks!
  • 11 2
 Hadn't checked out the voting page in a couple days, cringed seeing the roost in the last round... So unoriginal, jeez..
  • 13 3
 *Insert comment complaining about roost shot here*
  • 9 0
 I can't believe Margus Riga and Paris Gore's photos didn't make it through the next round. Damn you roost.
  • 8 2
Okay all fair and square the aurora shot was the most deserving of the dub
  • 7 0
 Honestly surprised Shannon's shot got past Laue's let alone Gore's aurora. But jaysusgawd please let it beat the shitty roost.
  • 2 1
 @agentninety3: anything but the roost. It's not like its even a challenging photo to take. Find dust, find burst mode on camera, tada thousands of dollars ez money
  • 7 1
 I can't believe people think these are the two best photos of the year. They are quite nice but really nothing special and there have been a shit load of great photos
  • 10 2
 All those amazing photos an a f*cking skid makes it to the final?????
  • 4 3
 That's right, it's a "skid". Technically speaking "roost" is created by the wheel spinning and throwing dirt out from the back wheel.
  • 7 2
 I've been wanting the Steve Shannon pic to win since the beginning. Just makes me wanna grab the bike and go ride every time I see it! Sick shot!!
  • 8 1
 This sucks.
  • 4 8
flag diego-b (Feb 13, 2017 at 17:58) (Below Threshold)
 well obviously the roost shot is better than the other one but it is still a roost the least original shot you could how should we vote?
  • 6 1
 Oh NO, the Aurora pic got shafted. I bet it was those Russians.
  • 7 3
 I thought MTB grew out of it's little "we want to be motocross bikes" phase...
  • 5 1
 I'm shocked that either of these made final two, but it can't be the dust shot, come on.....
  • 2 0
 They should make the voting so that each photo is matched-up with all the rest, someone might think that photo 1 is better than photo 2 but might think it's worse than photo 3, none of this 70%basedonluck system.
  • 2 1
 How the "superman" shot was beat by the "light coming through the forest" pic is baffling. The superman picture was a glimpse into what mountain bike heaven will be like when we all die. The tree picture is beautiful- but the picture seems more focused on the background and not the biker.
  • 3 1
 There are some much better shots that didn't get through! Everyone should get to vote for their favourite half of the photos in each round
  • 4 1
 Steve Shanon's has been one of my top 2 since the beginning. Such an awesome capture.
  • 3 0
 did not pay to much attention to this but... i wanted 2 c who was #1. I am flabbergasted.
  • 2 0
 Technically the roost shot is probably well executed, but it lacks any story telling, mood or landscape that goes with MTBing, except the "roooooost" kind of mood.
  • 4 0
 Too bad...
  • 5 4
 The two photos I hated the most have made it into the finals this year. Same as last year. Well, at least I got 14 sweet new background photos from it.
  • 6 2
  • 1 0
 And Laue
  • 5 2
 Nice Steve Shannon! You deserve this!!!
  • 4 1
 Fucking roost in a dust bowl .... cmon man.
  • 3 1
 Please pinkbike use only roost shots next year so no one will know what to vote for and no one is angry
  • 3 1
 i said it: STEVE SHANNON POY 2017 Smile hell yes ... no fckin roost for the top step
  • 4 2
 Voted on roost. Sorry guys, at least i can see some MTB on this photo Wink Saaalty
  • 3 0
  • 4 3
 Chill's just a photo contest. All the pics were pretty cool really
  • 4 1
 Frankly, I am stunned.
  • 6 3
 noo the roost must die
  • 3 2
 so, every year its gonna be a roost shot/sand blows out shot for PIC OF THE YEAR?? I hope the not....
  • 2 1
  • 3 0 Disappointed.
  • 3 0
  • 1 0
 This will be my reaction when the roost shot wins...
  • 3 5

For next year can we please put a requirement that anyone under the 170mm of travel cannot vote past the 2nd round? Good friggen jesus christ. Its like the 2016 presidential elections all over again. He's even looking at the camera showing an incredibly bad staged f*cking shot. You all mountains are f*cking idiots!"


200mm travel 4 Life
  • 1 0
 Great images on the Nomination album.... only a couple of them in the comp.
  • 2 0
 what year is that roost shot?? 2014 or 2015??
  • 4 4
 Well the roost is definitely epic, but I think Steve's shot is just too good... it will squeak the win at 53%
  • 5 4
 Matt Macduffs loop picture shouldve won
  • 2 0
 dont do it in the park
  • 4 4
 Roost for the win, cmon with thay xc green whatever, its not even nice ffs
  • 2 4
 Brown pow!
  • 4 7
 The hood got our back
  • 8 2
 Love what you guys do but you have approx 10 times the backing of Shannon in terms of followers etc. You can generate a shit tonne of votes just by putting a post on Insta. I don't mind the roost shot but this time I'm voting for the underdog.
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