Barcelona – Jamaica’s Usain Bolt and Allyson Felix of the U.S. have been named the Men and Women World Athletes of the Year for 2012 respectively, according to the world athletics governing body, IAAF.
Bolt, who won the award for the fourth time and Felix, a first-time winner, received their trophies and 100,000 dollars cash prize at the Athletes of the Year Awards Ceremony held in Barcelona, Spain, on Saturday.
Bolt, 26, also won the World Athlete of the Year award in 2008, 2009 and 2011.
He successfully defended both his 100m and 200m titles at the London Olympic Games, clocking 9.63 secs and 19.32 secs respectively, both the fastest times in the World, this year.
Bolt concluded his Olympic appearance by anchoring a Jamaican quartet to a 36.84 secs World record in the 4x100m Relay. He won six out of seven competitions in the 100m and three of four in the 200m.
Felix, 27, following World 200m titles in 2005, 2007 and 2009, won the Olympic 200m title in London.
She was part of the gold medal-winning 4x100m and 4x400m relay teams to become the first woman since 1988 to win three gold medals at a single Olympic Games.
The victorious 4x100m Relay quartet in London clocked a 40.82 World record.
Her 21.69 victory in the 200m at the U.S. Olympic Trials was the fastest in the world this year and made Felix the fourth fastest woman in history.
In some of the other awards handed out on Saturday, David Rudisha of Kenya won the Male Performance of the Year Award, after setting a world record in 800m at the London Olympics.
Elias Makori, also of Kenya, won the World Journalist Award.
Makori has covered athletics for 20 years, first for the East African Standard and since 1993 for the Nation Media Group, where he currently works as the Sports Editor for one of Africa’s leading English language dailies, the Daily Nation.