IAAF World Athlete of the Year

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Sally Pearson and Usain Bolt, athletes of the year in 2011, with their own awards.

The IAAF Athlete of the Year award is a prize that can be won by athletes participating in events within the sport of athletics organised by the International Athletic Foundation of the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF), including track and field, cross country running, road running, and racewalking.


Year Men Women
1988 United States Carl Lewis United States Florence Griffith-Joyner
1989 United States Roger Kingdom Cuba Ana Fidelia Quirot
1990 United Kingdom Steve Backley Jamaica Merlene Ottey
1991 United States Carl Lewis (2) Germany Katrin Krabbe
1992 United States Kevin Young Germany Heike Henkel
1993 United Kingdom Colin Jackson United Kingdom Sally Gunnell
1994 Algeria Noureddine Morceli United States Jackie Joyner-Kersee
1995 United Kingdom Jonathan Edwards United States Gwen Torrence
1996 United States Michael Johnson Russia Svetlana Masterkova
1997 Denmark Wilson Kipketer United States Marion Jones
1998 Ethiopia Haile Gebrselassie United States Marion Jones (2)
1999 United States Michael Johnson (2) Romania Gabriela Szabo
2000 Czech Republic Jan Železný United States Marion Jones
2001 Morocco Hicham El Guerrouj United States Stacy Dragila
2002 Morocco Hicham El Guerrouj (2) United Kingdom Paula Radcliffe
2003 Morocco Hicham El Guerrouj (3) South Africa Hestrie Cloete
2004 Ethiopia Kenenisa Bekele Russia Yelena Isinbayeva
2005 Ethiopia Kenenisa Bekele (2) Russia Yelena Isinbayeva (2)
2006 Jamaica Asafa Powell United States Sanya Richards
2007 United States Tyson Gay Ethiopia Meseret Defar
2008 Jamaica Usain Bolt Russia Yelena Isinbayeva (3)
2009 Jamaica Usain Bolt (2) United States Sanya Richards (2)
2010 Kenya David Rudisha Croatia Blanka Vlašić
2011 Jamaica Usain Bolt (3) Australia Sally Pearson
2012 Jamaica Usain Bolt (4) United States Allyson Felix
2013 Jamaica Usain Bolt (5) Jamaica Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce
2014 France Renaud Lavillenie New Zealand Valerie Adams
2015 United States Ashton Eaton Ethiopia Genzebe Dibaba
2016 Jamaica Usain Bolt (6) Ethiopia Almaz Ayana
2017 Qatar Mutaz Essa Barshim Belgium Nafissatou Thiam
2018 Kenya Eliud Kipchoge Colombia Caterine Ibargüen