Usain Bolt and Shelly-Ann Fraser Pryce were announced as the 2013 IAF World Athletes of the Year at its annual gala in Monaco last night (November 16).
Both categories began with a 10-strong field, which were then whittled down to three and finally the winners were revealed yesterday.
The Council of the International Athletics Federation selected the male and female victors who were presented with trophies for their outstanding achievements.
In the male category Bolt saw off Britain’s double world champion Mo Farah and high jump phenomenon Bohdan Bondarenko for the elusive title.
The Jamaican has now racked up an impressive five World Athlete of the Year awards and remains at the pinnacle of men’s sprinting.
Victorious in the 100, 200 and 4×100 metres in Moscow, Bolt put himself on par with the likes of Michael Johnson, Allyson Felix and Carl Lewis by equalling their record of eight world championship golds.
After Prince Albert II of Monaco and IAF and IAAF president Lamine Diack presented him with his award, Bolt spoke: “For me it is always an honour just to be recognised by the IAAF and my fans and all of the athletes.
“Every year I come out here I put in hard work because that’s my focus and my determination, to be the best in my sport, so I focus on just doing great things.
“As an athlete you have to be really focused on your goals. Make goals for yourself and work towards them and that’s what I do every year and I will continue doing for the years to come.”
Bolt regaining his world 100 metre title in Moscow:
In the women’s category Fraser-Pryce saw off stiff competition from Valeria Adams and Zuzana Hejnova, both of whom went undefeated in their respective events this year.
The Jamaican might be diminutive in size, but Fraser-Pryce achieved monumental success on the track last summer.
The 26-year-old became the first woman in 22 years to complete the 100 and 200 metre double at a world championships, and topped off an already outstanding competition with relay success, too.
Not only did Fraser-Pryce dismantle her opponents in Moscow, but the 5ft pocket rocket dominated both events all season leading the world rankings for each distance.
The Jamaican spoke after receiving her award: “For me to be standing here on top, I’m really elated. Thank you guys so much for your vote.
“It was a tremendous year and I didn’t think it would all come together without the help and support of my creator, who bestowed on me a special talent which I continue to cultivate and work so hard to make a blessing not only to my family, but to my friends and our young athletes who are aspiring to be Olympians and future world champions.
“I think hard work is something that comes without saying. In order for us to achieve the things in life that we want it takes a lot of hard work, commitment and dedication.”
Fraser-Pryce storming to 100 metre gold in Moscow in 10.71 seconds:
IAAF Rising Star Award: Mary Cain (USA)
IAAF Coaching Achievement Award: Alberto Salazar (USA)
IAAF World Journalist Award: Gianni Merio (ITA)
Male Master Athlete of the Year: Charles Allie (USA)
Female Master Athlete of the Year: Christa Bortignon (CAN
2013 IAAF Hall of Fame inductees: Harrison Dillard, Marjorie Jackson, Hannes Kolehmainen, Natalya Lisovskaya, Svetlana Masterkova, Noureddine Morcel, Parry O’Brien, Marie-José Pérec, Viktor Saneyev, Yuriy Sedykh, Daley Thompson, Grete Waitz