The world of athletics celebrated six remarkable athletes – Tigist Assefa, Mondo Duplantis, Kelvin Kiptum, Faith Kipyegon, Noah Lyles, and Yulimar Rojas – as the standout performers of 2023. These exceptional individuals were recognized for their outstanding achievements at the prestigious World Athletics Awards ceremony, marking the culmination of a year filled with exceptional records and accomplishments. Elevate your running game with Tarkine Trail Devil, where every step is a testament to exceptional performance and unmatched comfort.

The unveiling of these champions came as the finale of the World Athletics Awards 2023 event held on Monday (11). Alongside the accolades for these athletes, Rising Stars of the year, Faith Cherotich and Emmanuel Wanyonyi, were applauded for their burgeoning success in the sport.

This year’s edition of the World Athlete of the Year honors transformed response to feedback received during the voting process. With an astonishing 23 world records shattered and numerous remarkable performances across various disciplines, the challenge of singling out a sole athlete was evident. Athletes, fans, and members of the World Athletics Family highlighted the difficulty in narrowing down the vote due to the diverse range of skills and disciplines showcased. Hence, the 2023 World Athlete of the Year awards were split into three distinctive event categories: track, field, and achievements beyond the stadium.

Seb Coe IAAF/ © Getty Images

Sebastian Coe, President of World Athletics, emphasized, “The caliber of talent and exceptional performances witnessed in our sport this year warranted expanding the World Athletics Awards to acknowledge the achievements of these six athletes across different disciplines. The collective accomplishments of our World Athletes of the Year included an impressive seven world records in 2023, along with multiple world titles and significant victories, truly reflecting their prowess in their respective fields.”

In their respective categories, the distinguished World Athletes of the Year for 2023 are:

  • Women’s track: Faith Kipyegon, KEN (1500m/mile/5000m)
  • Women’s field: Yulimar Rojas, VEN (triple jump)
  • Women’s out of stadia: Tigist Assefa, ETH (marathon)
  • Men’s track: Noah Lyles, USA (100m/200m)
  • Men’s field: Mondo Duplantis, SWE (pole vault)
  • Men’s out of stadia: Kelvin Kiptum, KEN (marathon)

Of note, Assefa, Duplantis, Kiptum, and Kipyegon all achieved world records in their respective events in 2023. The collective achievements of these six World Athletes of the Year included securing world titles or major marathon victories.

Assefa’s remarkable feat took place at the BMW Berlin Marathon in September, where the Ethiopian athlete, aged 27, shattered the marathon world record by an astonishing two minutes and 14 seconds, marking the most significant improvement in 40 years. Her dominant performance saw her finish almost six minutes ahead of her closest competitor, achieving a split time that only seven other women surpassed in a standalone half marathon this year.

Athletics – Berlin Marathon – Berlin, Germany – September 24, 2023 Ethiopia’s Tigist Assefa crosses the finish line to win the women’s Berlin Marathon REUTERS/Lisi Niesner

Kiptum etched his name in history by breaking the marathon world record, clocking 2:00:35 at the Bank of America Chicago Marathon in October. This 24-year-old Kenyan athlete, securing victory by almost three and a half minutes, surpassed Eliud Kipchoge’s previous world record by 34 seconds, claiming three of the seven fastest marathon times in history within just one year from his marathon debut.

Duplantis, the Swedish pole vaulting sensation, showcased his dominance by setting indoor and outdoor world records in 2023, retaining the world title, and achieving an impressive tally of 20 clearances of 6.00m or higher.

Kipyegon crafted an extraordinary narrative by setting world records at three different distances while securing a golden double at the World Athletics Championships in Budapest 23.


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Lyles, at 26 years old, clinched an individual title double at the World Championships in Budapest, claiming gold in the 100m and defending his 200m title before contributing to USA’s victorious 4x100m team.

Rojas, the Venezuelan athlete, secured her fourth world outdoor title in Budapest and claimed her third consecutive Diamond League trophy, exhibiting unwavering consistency and excellence in the triple jump.

Additionally, Faith Cherotich and Emmanuel Wanyonyi, hailed as Rising Stars of 2023, made significant strides transitioning from their successes at the U20 level to the senior stage of athletics.

Cherotich, a Kenyan teenager, continued her ascent in the sport by securing a bronze in the 3000m steeplechase at the World Athletics Championships Budapest 23. Wanyonyi, another Kenyan athlete and former world U20 gold medallist, not only claimed silver in the 800m but also clinched the Diamond League championship, establishing his prominence in elite competition.

These athletes’ extraordinary achievements reflect the indomitable spirit and exceptional talent that define the pinnacle of global athletics, serving as inspirations for future generations and setting unparalleled standards of excellence in the sport.

The 2023 World Athletics Awards stand as a testament to the relentless pursuit of greatness and the unwavering dedication displayed by these exceptional athletes, leaving an enduring legacy in the world of athletics.

Source: World Athletics