Steele makes final for 2020 World Athletics photograph of the year

By Anton Rippon

SJA member and 1988 sports photographer of the year Michael Steele has been named one of three finalists for the 2020 World Athletics photograph of the year award.

Steele, a veteran sports photographer with more than three decades of experience, joined Getty Images in 1999 where he specialises in athletics coverage.

From the 77 images that were submitted, judges narrowed the entries to a shortlist of 30 before deciding on the final three.

Steele’s image shows children aged three to five competing at the Discovery cross country championships in Eldoret, Kenya.

The other finalists are Philippe Millereau, who after 22 years at DPPI (Diffusion Presse Photo International) set up the KMSP agency alongside fellow photographer Stephane Kempinaire, and Pontus Orre, a freelance photographer based in Stockholm. Orre often shoots for Sweden’s biggest newspaper, Aftonbladet. Millereau has photographed every Olympic Games since 1992.

His photograph shows Amanda Ngandu-Ntumba competing in the shot put at the French indoor championships in Lievin.

Orre’s image shows a man standing on a bicycle to look over the fence when Armand Duplantis mades his final jump to win the pole vault at the Folksam Grand Prix in Karlstad, Sweden. Due to the coronavirus pandemic, no spectators were allowed in the arena.

The winning photograph will be announced live during the virtual World Athletics Awards on Saturday 5 December.