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This page contains an overview of the year 2009 in athletics .

The major competition of the year was the 2009 World Championships in Athletics. At the event, Usain Bolt reaffirmed himself as one of the world's foremost athletes with world records in the 100 and 200 metres. Caster Semenya won 800 m gold at the championships, but a request that she submit to a gender verification test was made public, sparking widespread controversy and debate. Yelena Isinbayeva, a clear favourite, finished last in the pole vault competition, but rebounded with a world record a week later.

Kenenisa Bekele, Sanya Richards and Isinbayeva were the winners of the last IAAF Golden League jackpot, as the series was replaced by the IAAF Diamond League in 2010.

Major events



World records


Event Athlete Nation Performance Place Date
100 m Usain Bolt 9.58 Berlinmarker, Germanymarker August 16
200 m 19.19 August 20
10 km (road) Micah Kogo 27:01 Brunssummarker, Netherlandsmarker March 29
15 km (road) Deriba Merga 41.29+ =WR Ras Al Khaimahmarker, United Arab Emiratesmarker February 20
30 km (road) Haile Gebrselassie 1:27:49+ Berlin Marathon, Germanymarker September 20
Samuel Kiplimo Kosgei
4×1500 metres relay William Biwott Tanui

Gideon Gathimba

Geoffrey Kipkoech Rono

Augustine Kiprono Choge
14:36.23 Brusselsmarker, Belgiummarker September 4


Event Athlete Nation Performance Place Date
Pole vault Yelena Isinbayeva 5.06 m Zürichmarker, Switzerlandmarker August 28
Hammer throw Anita Wlodarczyk 77.96 m Berlinmarker, Germanymarker August 22

Season's bests

60 metres 6.42 s AR 7.11 s
100 metres 9.58 s WR 10.64 s
200 metres 19.19 s WR 21.88 s
400 metres
800 metres
1500 metres
3000 metres
5000 metres
10,000 metres
60 metres hurdles 7.37 7.82
100/110 metres hurdles
400 metres hurdles
3000 metres steeplechase
10 kilometres
15 kilometres
20 kilometres
Half marathon
25 kilometres
30 kilometres
20 kilometres race walk
50 kilometres race walk
Pole vault
High jump
Long jump
Triple jump
Shot put
Discus throw
Javelin throw
Hammer throw
4×100 metres relay
4×400 metres relay

Track and field



Long distance




Combined events

Road running

Cross country




Award Winner
IAAF World Athlete of the Year
Track & Field Athlete of the Year
European Athlete of the Year Trophy
European Athletics Rising Star


Award Winner
IAAF World Athlete of the Year
Track & Field Athlete of the Year
European Athlete of the Year Trophy
European Athletics Rising Star


Incidents of athletes testing positive for banned substances were low-key compared to previous years. The IAAF conducted their largest ever anti-doping program at the 2009 World Championships in Athletics, and Jamel Chatbi and Nigerian hurdler Amaka Ogoegbunam were the only athletes who tested positive. Five Jamaican sprint athletes, including Yohan Blake and Sheri-Ann Brooks, tested positive for Methylhexanamine prior to the world championships. Four of the athletes received three-month bans, while Brooks was cleared on a technicality.

A Brazilian coach, Jayme Netto, admitted that he had administered the banned drug recombinant EPO on five of his athletes without their knowledge. South American champion Lucimar Teodoro was another high profile Brazilian athlete to be banned.



  1. Ramsak, Bob (2009-09-04). Bekele, Isinbayeva and Richards’ road to the Jackpot – ÅF Golden League. IAAF. Retrieved on 2009-10-25.
  2. Bolt and Richards are World Athletes of the Year – 2009 World Athletics Gala. IAAF (2009-11-22). Retrieved on 2009-11-22.
  3. Berlin to host largest ever IAAF Anti-Doping operation. IAAF (2009-08-11). Retrieved on 12 August 2009 Archived 8 September 2009
  4. Berlin 2009 - Nigerian fails drugs test. Eurosport/Reuters (2009-08-21). Retrieved on 2009-09-25. Archived 2009-09-27.
  5. Jamaicans given three-month ban. BBC Sport (2009-09-17). Retrieved on 2009-10-25.
  6. Coach takes blame for five Brazilian athletes failing drug tests. The Guardian (2009-08-06). Retrieved on 2009-10-25.
  7. Brazilian hurdler banned for two years for doping. Reuters (2009-08-12). Retrieved on 2009-08-12.
  8. Raynor, Kayon (2009-09-29). Collins, 2003 World 100m champion, retires. IAAF. Retrieved on 2009-09-28.
  9. Morse, Parker (2009-09-25). Pole Vault Pioneer Stacy Dragila takes a bow. IAAF. Retrieved on 2009-09-30.
  10. Illness ends Pechonkina's career. BBC Sport (2009-09-28). Retrieved on 2009-09-28.

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