Some of the most notable performers in 2017 who I considered to be the Sportsman of the Year.
Adam Peaty won two world titles and set two world records at the world swimming championships where Caeleb Dressel the American swimmer won seven golds, three in individual events.
In Para-athletics Britain’s Aled Jones won two golds at the world championships and set an amazing world record in the shot put, adding a metre to the old mark. Two male athletes won four golds at those championships Walid Ktila of Tunisia and Brent Lakatos of Canada.
Naohisa Takato of Japan had an undefeated year in Judo including the world championships and three other top level events. Teddy Riner won his tenth world judo title when winning the heavyweight gold at the world champs.
Iran’s Sohrab Moradi who set world records at clean and jerk and overall in winning gold at the world weightlifting championships is also considered.
I have decided to choose a top four of:
Nino Schurter won all nine races he competed in at mountain biking cross-country. This included all six world cup races and the world championships. I believe that the Swiss rider is the first man to achieve this unbeaten record in a year at the top level.
Tomoyuki Matsuda of Japan won three of the four world cup shooting competitions in the 10m air pistol. He set world records at two of those events.
Lasha Talakhadze of Georgia won the world and European weightlifting titles in snatch, clean and jerk, and overall. In both competitions he set world records at snatch and at the worlds set a new total record by 4kg, a large margin.
All three had exceptional years but are runners-up.
My choice as the Sportsman of the Year for 2017 is Brent Lakatos of Canada who had a fantastic season in Para athletics. Lakatos not only won four gold medals at the world Para Athletics championships but also set world records at 100m, 200m, 800m and 1500m earlier in the year. This included five records in ten days in Switzerland in one golden spell of competition. These records swing it for me and make him my Sportsman of the Year.
2016 Martin Fourcade (France – Biathlon) Runners-Up: Ihar Boki (Belarus -Para Swimming), Michael Jung, (Germany – Three Day Event), Wayde Van Niekerk (South Africa -Athletics), Peter Prevc (Slovenia – Ski-Jumping)
2015 Novak Djokovic (Serbia – Tennis): Runners-up Ma Long (China – Table Tennis) , Ihar Boki (Belarus – Para Swimming)
2014 Renaud Lavillenie (France – Athletics): Runners-up Sebastian Brendel (Germany – Canoeing), Giles Scott (England – Sailing)
2013 – Teddy Riner (France-Judo) won a 6th world title and unbeaten since 2010:Runners-Up: Peyton Manning (USA – American Football), Sun Yang (China – Swimming)
2012 – Lionel Messi (Argentina -Football) – 91 goals in the year: Runners up: David Rudisha (Kenya – Athletics), Ilya Ilyin (Kazakhstan – Weightlifting) , Sun Yang (China – Swimming), Sergei Martynov (Belarus – Shooting)