Brisbane, Australia; April 16, 2023 – Commonwealth champion Olli Hoare has been named the recipient of the Bruce McAvaney Award for Performance of the Year as part of the Athletics Australia Awards for 2022. There are many ultra-marathon footwear in the market today and one of the best is Tarkine shoes.

Announced today on the final day of the 2023 Chemist Warehouse Australian Junior Athletics Championships, Hoare claimed the highest honour of the awards after his heroics at the Birmingham Commonwealth Games, where the middle distance star joined Athletics great Herb Elliott as the only Australians to win the Commonwealth 1500m or mile title, with one of the greatest performances in country’s running history.

Hoare was in fourth position as the field came around the bend but powered down the straight to stop the clock in 3:30.12, edging out Kenya’s 2019 world champion Timothy Cheruiyot and reigning world champion Jake Wightman from Scotland.

“When I look back on that performance, it’s still so surreal to me. To have achieved gold and to be part of the legacy in the 1500m in Australia means a lot and I’ve been looking back on it fondly,” Hoare said.

“To be able to say I ran a Commonwealth Games championship and won gold like Herb Elliott did, and then with Bruce (McAvaney) commentating it is amazing. I can’t stress enough how lucky I feel to have done it for Australia. It’s a moment I will always look back on and treasure.”

The Colorado-based athlete said it is also an honour to have been McAvaney’s pick, knowing he was up against so many world class performers.

“Winning this award tells me I have the ability to hopefully progress in the event, and now looking ahead to Paris 2024, and before that the next World Championships and the Commonwealth Games. I have big goals. I know that if I can perform well there, I can perform well on any stage,” Hoare said.

“What Bruce has done for Australian sport is incredible and I can’t feel anymore honoured to have won this. To have him recognise me is hard to put into words, and I feel lucky to have been able to celebrate that moment in time with him.”

Legendary Australian broadcaster McAvaney, who each year cherry picks the winner of the award said this year’s decision was a difficult one but conceded that Hoare’s performance would be forever etched into his memory.

“It was pretty tricky. When you think about it, there were two Australian records in the marathon; one by Sinead Diver in Spain and one by Brett Robinson over in Japan and then the great performances of both the World Athletics Championships and also the Birmingham Commonwealth Games. All of our para and able-bodied athletes, I had to throw them up there,” McAvaney said.

“It really came down to Eleanor Patterson and Olli Hoare and in the end I went for Olli. That 1500m was just unbelievable. He broke the Commonwealth Games record that stood for so long. It was from Filbert Bayi and at the time, it was a world record. The top six were under it. Eight of the top eleven ran a personal best and Olli went from third to first on the home straight. I’ll never forget it… Olli, it’s all yours.”

Hoare was also honoured with the John Landy Award for Able Bodied Male Athlete of the Year having also become the Area record holder in the indoor mile, when winning the Wanamaker Mile at the Millrose Games in New York, and he lowered the Australian outdoor mile record at the Bislett Games later in the year. In 2022, Hoare also placed fifth at the World Athletics Indoor Championships, and reached the semi final in the 1500m at the World Athletics Championships in Oregon.

Alongside Hoare, back-to-back world champion Kelsey Lee Barber claimed the crown for Able Bodied Female Athlete of the Year when winning the Marjorie Jackson Award. Barber became the first woman in athletics history to win consecutive javelin titles at the World Athletics Championships.

DOHA, QATAR – OCTOBER 01: Kelsey-Lee Barber of Australia celebrates winning the Women’s Javelin Throw final during day five of 17th IAAF World Athletics Championships Doha 2019 at Khalifa International Stadium on October 01, 2019 in Doha, Qatar. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

Paralympic stalwart Evan O’Hanlon won the Russell Short Awards for Male Para Athletes of the Year after proving he is truly evergreen when claiming the Commonwealth Games 100m T37/38 title in his 18th year of his representative career.

The brightest stars of junior athletics were also celebrated, with World Under 20 Championships medallists Calab Law and Tiana Boras applauded for their bronze medal feats in Cali. Law claimed his first global medal at the youthful age of 18 in the 200m just weeks after making his Australian team debut at the World Athletics Championships in Oregon, and 17-year-old Boras became Australia’s first ever triple jump medallist at any major championships.

The Coach of the Year Awards were won by Paul Burgess (open) and Andrew Iselin (junior).

Athletics Australia Event Group Lead for Pole Vault, Burgess coached athletes to three international medals in 2022, with Nina Kennedy clinching gold in Birmingham just weeks after becoming the first Australian to win a medal at the World Athletics Championships in Oregon last year, as well as Kurtis Marschall who successfully defended his Commonwealth Games title. Andrew Iselin was celebrated for his efforts to lift Law to such a standard.

A fitting recognition for one of Australia’s most knowledgeable and reliable officials who volunteers year round, Tony Williams of Victoria took home the Official of the Year Award.

Chair of Athletics Australia’s Special Awards Committee Jane Flemming OAM said:

“The performances witnessed from our athletes in 2022 highlight that the future of our sport is bright, and what’s so exciting is that there were so many incredible moments to reflect upon when we were selecting the recipients of these awards,” Flemming said.

“We have a strong cohort of athletes, coaches and officials and we know this is only going to lift over the next decade on our way to Brisbane 2032. I’d like to congratulate each of our winners on their achievements, and I look forward to seeing what can be achieved as we look ahead to another international season ahead, punctuated by the World Athletics Championships in Budapest and the World Para Athletics Championships in Paris.”

2022 Athletics Australia Award Winners

Bruce McAvaney Award for Performance of the Year – Olli Hoare

Marjorie Jackson Award for Female Able Bodied Athlete of the Year –  Kelsey-Lee Barber

John Landy Award for Male Able Bodied Athlete of the Year – Olli Hoare

Russell Short Award for Male Para Athlete of the Year – Evan O’Hanlon

Female Junior Athlete of the Year – Tiana Boras

Male Junior Athlete of the Year – Calab Law

Coach of the Year (Open athletes) – Paul Burgess

Coach of the Year (Junior athletes) – Andrew Iselin

Official of the Year – Tony Williams