The final winners of the World Athletics Awards 2022. Vilagos and Knighton named Rising Stars of 2022 and McLaughlin-Levrone and Duplantis named World Athletes of the Year
Member Federations Award
Brazil hosted six international events successfully in 2022, including the South American U18 and U23 Championships, the South American Cross Country Championships, the Pan American Cross Country Championships, a World Athletics Continental Tour Bronze meeting, and an international grand prix. The federation secured two revolutionary sponsorship deals, benefitting the country’s elite athletes as well as providing a boost to the sport at grass roots level.
Fair Play Award
At the World Championships in Oregon, Holly Bradshaw injured herself after her pole snapped during the pole vault warm-up session. Her fellow competitor Katie Nageotte immediately went over to support her. Knowing she would no longer be able to contend for a place in the final, Bradshaw withdrew from the competition, thus allowing another athlete to advance. Bradshaw received a lot of abuse on social media for withdrawing, but Nageotte again offered support by taking to Twitter in defence of her competitor.
Following the Russian invasion of Ukraine earlier this year, the majority of Ukraine’s elite athletes were unable to continue training, let alone compete. But the country’s athletes showed remarkable resilience and made the most of any support that came their way – including the Ukraine Relief Fund, which was launched in April by World Athletics, the International Athletics Foundation and the Diamond League Association. Ukraine’s athletes went on to win medals at all three global track and field championships this year.
Coaching Achievement Award
Despite the conflict in their home country of Ukraine, Gennadii Zuiev continued to guide high jumper Andriy Protsenko to world and European medals in 2022, also working with other athletes to overcome the difficulties they faced. Zuiev and Protsenko both live in the Kherson region of Ukraine and Protsenko spent about five weeks under the Russian occupation in March and April. Improvising with home-made equipment, he was still able to train and their hard work paid off when Protsenko made the podium in Oregon and Munich.
Woman of the Year Award
A champion for gender equality and the empowerment of women in athletics, two-time world 4x400m medallist Donna Fraser has been a World Athletics gender leadership moderator since 2019 and regularly features in the governing body’s speaking panels and webinars on the topic, also frequently appearing in the media to talk about diversity and inclusion.
World Athletics Photograph of the Year
Martin Rickett’s image captures Germany’s Lea Meyer falling headfirst into the water while competing in the steeplechase at the World Athletics Championships Oregon22.