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by Mark Zalewski
June 15, 2016
In today’s CT Daily News Digest: Richeze wins tight Suisse sprint; Judge rules that Operacion Puerto blood bags can finally be handed over; UCI, WADA to push for identification of Puerto athletes; Interview: Why Phil Gaimon believes Danielson wasn’t doping; Keagan Girdlestone out of coma and breathing unassisted; Dot watching – The Trans Am and the Tour Divide; Rio velodrome not ready until mid-July; UK Anti-Doping admits failures in Dan Stevens case; Copeland to manage new Bahrain team; Fabio Felline set to return to racing; Chris Anker Sørensen speaks of Tinkoff team exit; Cycling media loses valued member; Leah Kirchman extends with Liv-Plantur; Is cycling more harmful to the environment than a car?; Aviva Women’s Tour Of Britain Preview; Brandon Semenuk pins it for 100 seconds; Danny Van Poppel makes incredible save, is fined by commissaires
The people that cover bike racing with words and images make up a unique fraternity — though in traditional competition with each other for a story scoop or the best image, the long days and brutal travel involved in covering this beautiful sport often creates a common bond in the media corps that results in lasting friendships. Repeat that over years and it can even become familial, seeing the same people every week around the world.
The cycling media recently lost a member of that family. Doug Pensinger, a long-time sports photographer for Getty Images, died on Friday at his home in Denver. He was 52.
Photo courtesy: Casey Gibson
Unlike writers who have bylines with stories, photographers are lesser-known, with their images speaking for them. In that way Doug’s images were prose. It is likely you have enjoyed seeing his work in many cycling publications over the years, from the Tour de France to the Tour of California and many races in between.
Doug began his career when he was only 15-years-old as a freelancer for a local paper near his home in Pennsylvania. He studied at the Brooks Institute of Photography in Santa Barbara which turned into a freelance career with publications like The Washington Post, The Associated Press, Time Magazine and Sports Illustrated.
From there he became a staff photographer for Army Times Publishing Company which saw him photograph some important historical events such as the Invasion of Panama, the Gulf War, unrest in Bosnia and humanitarian aid in Somalia. At the same time he took freelance sport assignments for Allsport Photography, which was eventually acquired by Getty Images and where he would turn his eye to sports photography full time for the past 17 years.
In his career, Doug captured both some of the biggest events of the four major sports in the United States and some of the least-known niche sports in far away places. But he loved cycling — both in photographing it, as well as simply enjoying riding at his home in Colorado. To us in the family that is the cycling media he was the consummate professional as well as the one with the funny stories in the press room after a long stage. He, and his photography, will be missed.
Click through to read a tribute and see a gallery of his work at Cyclingnews.