Sunday, December 30, 2012

World's top 10 athletes in 2012

1. Usain Bolt (male, track and field)
Usain Bolt
The 26-year-old Jamaica sprint king proved his title of "the fastest man on earth" when he won men's 100m, 200m and 4x100m gold medals in London Olympics to repeat his success from Beijing 2008 - a feat never achieved before.
2. Sebastian Vettel (male, F1)
Sebastian Vettel
The 25-year-old Red Bull's driver from Germany became the youngest triple champion of Formula One in a dramatic season-ending Brazilian Grand Prix, where his sixth ranking was enough to lift him alongside legendary drivers Juan Manuel Fangio and Michael Schumacher as the sport's only three-time champion.
3. Lionel Messi (male, soccer)
Lionel Messi
The 25-year-old Barcelona star from Argentina won the 2011 FIFA Ballon d'Or, the prestigious award for the world's outstanding footballer, for the third straight time. He also set a new record for the number of goals scored in a calendar year as his total scores increased to 91 goals after last week's Primera Liga.
4. Allyson Felix (female, track and field)
track and field best woman
The 27-year-old American sprinter enjoyed a successful journey in London this summer as she collected three Olympic golds in women's 200m, 4x400m relay and 4x100m relay and also helped set the new world record in women's 4x100m relay event.
5. Lin Dan (male, badminton)
best male badminton
The 29-year-old Chinese shuttler became the first man to win back-to-back Olympic badminton men's singles gold medals following his success in Beijing. He also became the first man to win the All England Open five times since 1977.
6. Michael Phelps (male, swimming)
best male swimmer
The 27-year-old U.S. superstar drew the curtain on his magnificent career by claiming his 18th Olympic gold medal at London 2012. As the most prolific medalist the Olympics have ever witnessed, Phelps surpassed gymnast Larissa Latynia with 22 Olympic medals.
7. LeBron James (male, basketball)
best male basketballer
The 28-year-old "King James" led Miami Heat to their second NBA title in franchise history, winning his first overall in 2012. Following up on his regular-season Most Valuable Player nod, James averaged 28.6 points, 10.2 rebounds and 7.4 assists in the Finals and was named Finals MVP.
8. Ye Shiwen (female, swimming)
Best female swimmer
The 16-year-old Chinese swimmer stunned the world with two individual medley golds and many records - a world record and an Olympic record - in her Olympic debut. Ye improved the world record in the women's 400m individual medley by more than one second, all the more remarkable as she swam the last 50m in a faster time than U.S. 400m individual medley champion Ryan Lochte.
9. Lindsey Vonn (female, skiing)
best female in skiing
The 28-year-old American skier won Downhill, Super G and Combined titles in a dominant year 2012. It was the fifth straight year she has won the Downhill, the fourth year she has won Super G and the third year she has won Combined. At the end of the 2011/12 season, she had 53 World Cup wins and was closing in on Annemarie Moser-Proll with 62 and Vreni Schneider with 55.
10. Oscar Pistorius (male, track and field )
best male paralympian track and field
The 26-year-old Blade Runner from South Africa became the first male Paralympian athlete to compete at the Olympic Games, and only the second ever after Marla Runyan, when he ran in both the 400m and 4x400m at the London 2012 Olympic Games. 


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