MONACO — Jamaica’s Usain Bolt was named the IAAF’s male athlete of the year despite his disqualification from the 100m final at the World Championships.
The 25-year-old Jamaican false-started at the marquee event in Daegu, but bounced back to take gold in the 200m and 4x100m relay.
“This season was a really trying season for me, I really had to work hard and stand up my game,” said Bolt, who was also named athlete of the year in 2008 and 2009.
“There were some close races this season, I really had to push myself. So this (award) really means a whole lot to me, because I really came out there hard this year, and all the hard work I put in paid off.”
Sally Pearson of Australia was given the women’s award after winning 10 of 11 races in the 100m hurdles, including taking gold in Daegu.
Bolt has revealed he will be targeting gold in four Olympic events at London 2012 after he expressed his desire to compete in the 4x400m relay. The Jamaican plans to run the longer relay for the first time as well as mounting a defence of his Olympic 100m, 200m and 4x100m titles.
The 100m and 200m world record holder would become the first man to win four gold medals in track and field at one Olympics since Carl Lewis achieved the feat in the 1984 Los Angeles games.
“I will probably be in good shape and I know the guys are really stepping up the 400m level in Jamaica,” the 25-year-old told BBC Sport. “If I can help to get them a gold medal, I will want to go on that team.
“Injury-wise, I am great. I have no problem and I’ve started high-intensity training.
“I definitely would want to try because if I do as well as in Berlin (in 2009), the 4x400m would top it off and even make it much better.”
The Olympic schedule means the sprinter will have the chance to compete for four golds as he would only have to run the finals of the relays races which means his individual events would not be affected.