SINGAPORE - A stunning night-time picture of the Singapore skyline outshone more than 4,000 entries to win the top prize in The Straits Times' Wherever You Are contest.
Engineering manager Tung Hon Keng, 47, captured the view from the carpark of Pearl Centre, which will close next year to make way for the Thomson MRT line.
"I love to take photos of buildings before they disappear so I went up there," said Mr Tung, who was captivated by the view of the financial district.
" I n e v e r thought I'd come that far in the contest. Every picture came with a story to tell. It was highly competitive."
He received $3,000 in cash and a host of other prizes including return flights to London, a five-day stay at the Millennium Gloucester Hotel and a pair of hospitality tickets from Chelsea Football Club for their game against Manchester City on Oct 27.
Mr Tung - who is ironically a fan of Chelsea's rivals Tottenham Hotspur - and his travel partner will be treated to lunch at the Stamford Bridge stadium where they will meet former Chelsea greats.
The six-week contest, which ended on Aug 23, is part of The Straits Times' thrust to bring news to readers wherever they are and on whatever platform they like. Some 4,200 readers sent in their photos and videos in six categories: holidaying, eating, getting around, making money, keeping fit and having fun.
In second place was Mr Robin Tan's picture of his son and daughter enjoying themselves on a water slide aboard a cruise liner.
The 56-year-old technical officer received $2,000.
Mr Tan was shocked at his success as it was his first time taking part in such a contest.
"And I sent in only one shot. Beginner's luck, maybe?" he said.
The second runner-up was Ms Selina Wee, who submitted a photo of her father reading The Straits Times while having a meal. She received $1,000.
Each of the three had previously won one of the six weekly $1,000 prizes on offer.
Said The Straits Times' editor Warren Fernandez: "Our readers sent us many great pictures from wherever they were, all round Singapore and the world.
"In the end, our winner was a stunning picture of a Singaporean gazing at the Singapore skyline, old and new, all lit up against the night sky. It was one of those hard-to-forget pictures that I thought would resonate with many of our readers."
Eight lucky draw winners walked away with $500 - four of whom won double that amount for being direct subscribers to the paper. An additional set of five merit prizes of $300 were given out for noteworthy entries.
Among the winners was Mr Sean Ng, 35, who captured a shot of his wife at the Louvre Museum in Paris during their honeymoon last December.
"I submitted the photo for fun, really," said the assistant vicepresident of a bank. "But such contests are good, because it made me read the papers and go to (The Straits Times) website more often to check out the photos."
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