Many of us, World Masters Athletics included, tried to maintain normalcy in the rare cases we could. WMA, Regional and National Championships were responsibly cancelled. Our annual Best Athlete awards are given to athletes competing in those championships who also had exceptional performances. 2020 WMA Best Athletes awards were not possible. We were compelled to find an alternative honour.
Our Council considered a number of options. Having awards based on performances during the Corona Pandemic did not seem right and was insensitive as the majority of athletes were not able to compete in live events. Council member and NCCMA President, Guillermo Guzmán, came up with the great idea of honouring the best male and female athlete of the decade.
World Masters Athletics is thrilled to announce we will be awarding WMA Athlete of the Decade before the end of March. Additionally, athlete must have broken a WMA record while earning at least one WMA Gold Medal during the decade.. Council charged a panel of knowledgeable, experienced individuals to nominate 6 male and 6 female athletes for consideration by Council. The announcement in March will include honourees and nominees.
WMA records set in 2020 were relatively rare. Most athletes, even if they could compete, were not able to train normally. Sometimes the difference in training and exertion resulted in athletes being more rested and they performed better. Regardless of the factors contributing to their performance, we felt it was important to recognise their exceptional accomplishments which were often under extraordinary circumstances. Athletes setting WMA records in 2020 will receive a special diploma commemorating their achievement.