Jamaican sprinter Usain Bolt and Australian hurdler Sally Pearson were named the male and female track and field athletes of the year.
Bolt won the award for the third time, while Pearson was honored for the first time by the International Association of Athletics Federations, track and field’s governing body.
Bolt, 25, successfully defended his 200-meter title at the world championships in South Korea in 19.40 seconds, the year’s second-fastest time, and anchored the Jamaica 4x100 relay team which defended its title in world record time of 37.04 seconds
Bolt also won five of six 100-meter races, posting the world’s top time of 9.78 seconds. However, he failed to defend his 100-meter title at the world championships after being disqualified in the final for a false start.
“This season was a really trying season for me, I really hard to work hard and stand up my game,” Bolt, who also won the award in 2008 and 2009, said in a statement. “I really had to push myself. So this really means a whole lot to me.”
Pearson, 25, won 10 of 11 races in the 100-meter hurdles and produced seven of the season’s fastest 11 times. She won the world title in 12.28 seconds, the fourth-fastest in history.
“To be able to win this for my country and my region Oceania means a lot and hopefully will inspire junior athletes to stay in athletics,” Pearson said.
Pearson is the first athlete from the Oceania region to win the award since the IAAF introduced the program in 1988.