Ryon Jones, Staff Reporter
Jamaica's sprint duo, Usain Bolt and Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, will be looking to finish ahead of their rivals, just as they did at this year's IAAF World Championships, after being shortlisted for the prestigious male and female World Athlete of the Year Award.
Twenty athletes have been selected by an IAAF panel of athletics experts. An email poll involving the World Athletics Family began yesterday and will close on Sunday, October 27, at midnight. At the conclusion of the voting process, three male and three female finalists will be selected and announced by the IAAF.
The Council of the International Athletic Foundation will then select the male and female winners, with the announcement taking place live during the 2013 World Athletics Gala on Saturday, November 16.
Bolt is in the running for his fifth title in six years, having copped the award in 2008, 2009, 2011, and 2012, missing out in 2010 when 800m world record holder David Rudisha took the crown. That year, Bolt was hampered by injury while the Kenyan broke the 800m world record twice.
Despite failing to continue his trend of breaking a world record at major championships, Bolt still enjoyed a fine season, winning the 100m, 200m, and 4x100m relay gold at Worlds. The 27-year-old lost just one race all season when he was defeated over 100m by American, Justin Gatlin.
Bolt's gold-medal haul in Moscow has made him the most successful athlete in World Championships history, with a career total of eight gold medals.
The other male nominees are: 800m runner Mohammed Aman (Ethiopia); high jumper Bohdan Bondarenko (Ukraine); decathlete Ashton Eaton (USA); distance runner Mohammed Farah (Great Britain); discus thrower Robert Harting (Germany); world marathon record holder Wilson Kipsang (Kenya); long jumper Aleksandr Menkov (Russia); 400m runner LaShawn Merritt (USA); and triple jumper Teddy Tamgho (France).
Fraser-Pryce had her most successful season on the track, as like her compatriot, Bolt, she captured gold in the 100m, 200m, and 4x100m at the World Championships. The feat saw the 26-year-old become only the second woman to win three gold medals at a single World Championships, joining Allyson Felix, whose accomplishment included two relay golds.
The 'Pocket Rocket', who is aiming to join Merlene Ottey (1990), the only Jamaican woman to have won the award, also dominated on the Diamond League circuit. Fraser-Pryce won both the 100m and 200m titles and was also responsible for the three fastest 100m times and two fastest 200m clockings for the season.
The other female nominees are: shot putter Valerie Adams (New Zealand); 1500m runner Abeba Aregawi (Sweden); distance runner Meseret Defar (Ethiopia); distance runner Tirunesh Dibaba (Ethiopia); 400m hurdles runner Zuzana Hejnova (Czech Republic); triple jumper Caterine Ibarguen (COL); discus thrower Sandra Perkovic (Croatia); sprint hurdler Brianna Rollins (USA); and high jumper Svetlana Shkolina (Russia).