Venezuelan Yulimar Rojas and Jamaican Shelly-Ann Fraser Pryce are the only two Latin American and Caribbean female athletes nominated for the 2019 IAAF Female Athlete of the Year Award.
The Venezuelan athlete secured the world title in Doha, Qatar, this year with a leap of 15.37 meters, as well as the 2nd best historical record in the female triple jump with 15.41 meters at the Mitin Jaen Paraiso Stadium in Spain.
Meanwhile, Jamaica’s Fraser-Pryce, who became World Champion in 2013, this year won two world titles in the 100 m sprint (10.71 seconds) and the 4x400m relay (41.44), in both cases with the best times of the season.
The IAAF panel of experts included three Kenyans: Brigid Kosgei, who set a new world record of 2:14:04 to win the Chicago marathon; Hellen Obiri, world champion in 5,000m in Doha with a championship record of 14:26.72, and Beatriz Chepkoech, monarch of the 3,000 hurdle meters with 8:57.84.
Others with possibilities are world champions Sifan Hassan, from Holland, Dalilah Muhammad from the United States, and runner Salwa Eid Naser from Bahrein.
The list is completed by Russian high jumper Mariya Lasitkene, British heptathlonist Katarina Johnson-Thompson and German long jumper Malaika Mihambo.
The absence of Cuban discus thrower Yaimé Pérez, Doha World Champion (69.17m) and leader in the Diamond League circuit (68.27m) is noticeable. This year Pérez secured the Pan American gold in Lima with a record for the competition (66.58m).
Voting for the Athlete of the Year closes on November 4 and that same day the list will be reduced to five finalists. The winner will be announced at the IAAF annual gala, scheduled for November 23 in Monaco.