Athletics world champion Josh Kerr intends to use his disappointment at not being shortlisted for the BBC Sports Personality of the Year award as “big motivation” going into the 2024 Paris Olympics.

The 26-year-old Scot won the 1500m title at the World Championships in August after finishing ahead of favourite Jakob Ingebrigtsen in Budapest, an achievement which many thought would earn him a place on the SPOTY list, including World Athletics president Lord Coe.

The list of nominees which was announced on Tuesday included former cricketer Stuart Broad, jockey Frankie Dettori, footballer Mary Earps, wheelchair tennis player Alfie Hewett, golfer Rory McIlroy and Kerr’s fellow athlete Katarina Johnson-Thompson.

Kerr admitted he was “massively disappointed” at not being on the list but thinks it will drive him on to turn the bronze he earned at Tokyo 2020 into a gold in Paris 2024.

He said: “I’ve been honoured in many different ways by a lot of fantastic people but we always think about the ones we didn’t get so it’s big motivation for me.

“Obviously massively disappointed, it’s such a prestigious event and award that I would loved to have been involved in.

“There’s nothing I can do. We are in a cut and dry sport – not a lot of things in my career have been up to other people’s judgement and I’ve always been taught to leave no doubt and obviously I left an element of doubt.

“I’m an Olympic bronze medallist and I’m going to go after that gold medal. I’ve earned everything I got in my career to this point and I’m going to earn the right to be in that conversation and I’ll show that through my performance and mental resilience.”

Team GB team-mate Johnson-Thompson also brought home a gold medal from the 2023 World Championships when a second-placed finish in the 800 metres guaranteed her heptathlon gold.

Kerr had already planned to attend the BBC event but now says he will go and support Johnson-Thompson to win the award ahead of a big year for the sport.

He added: “I will be there to represent athletics but KJT (Johnson-Thompson) had such an amazing comeback from 2019 and I think we are all proud to be there to support her.

“I’m not sitting crying about it, I’m getting out the door and start working for next year but I’ll be there to support her and that’s my job now.

“I was someone that brought a gold medal home for Britain and so was she. I’m excited in supporting her in hopefully winning this next week.

“I was hoping to get my flights covered if I’m honest but I don’t think that’s quite covered this time – I was hoping to be on that shortlist but I’m not, I’m still going to enjoy that experience.”

Kerr’s attention now switches to the Paris Games where he will look to earn another gold medal next August, and can take huge confidence from his win in Budapest after beating Tokyo Olympic gold medallist Ingebrigtsen of Norway to the world title.

He said: “I known I’ve always had the capabilities of being the best in the world but having the ability to do it and not just say I’m good enough… I’ve been in all these finals and not quite been able to do it so it’s nice to have one in the bag knowing my mind and body are capable of that big moment.

“I’m thinking like a champion and my life is getting structured like a world champion so instead of thinking I’m good enough, I’m just going to be on that roadmap to success!

“I’ve had this Olympic circle for a long time and I knew at age 26 I will be at the peak of my career in the 1500m and this would be the one so I’m excited to continue that dream.”

New world champion Josh Kerr knew he would break Jakob Ingebrigtsen as he stormed to 1500 metres gold and revealed he played mind games with the Norwegian.

The Scot clocked three minutes and 29.38 seconds to stun Ingebrigtsen, forcing the overwhelming favourite to settle for silver at the World Championships in Budapest.

Kerr emulated Jake Wightman’s win in Eugene last year and, with the injured Wightman missing in Hungary, Ingebrigtsen – second in 2022 – was denied the world crown again.

“I felt him break and I just needed to stay strong,” said Kerr, who adds to his Olympics bronze.

“I was looking up at the screen making sure no one was coming on my outside but with 50m to go I knew I had it.

“I felt there was a slight weakness with 200m to go, I had to be in lane two for a minute but I’m going to fight all the way to the end, regardless whether I broke him or not.

“I’ve been in four major championship finals and come away with only a bronze. I knew it was my turn. When you’re the underdog you have to come and take what’s yours, you’re not handed anything. It was about going there and taking what’s mine.”

Kerr, fifth last year, admitted he tried to psyche Ingebrigtsen out on Wednesday after wearing a similar vest to the one Wightman wore in Eugene.

“I’m not saying I wore the specific one to bring back some nightmares but I needed every single ounce I had. This was the vest I chose,” he added.

Wightman, watching from the BBC studio at the National Athletics Centre, labelled his Edinburgh AC club-mate the Terminator after victory.

“I like it (the Terminator nickname), back-to-back world champions, it’s not something anyone has ever done before,” said Kerr.

“Especially in back-to-back years because it’s not been possible. Great Britain has something in the water. We have to keep producing world champions.”

Ingebrigtsen made his move inside the final lap, only for Kerr to retaliate with around 200m remaining – almost a carbon copy of Wightman’s win in America.

Ingebrigtsen was unable to fight back down the final straight as Kerr held off his challenge to win his first major global title.

The 25-year-old, who trains in Seattle, also revealed he cuts off communication in the build up to the Championships to focus on his goal.

“I don’t have my phone for about two weeks beforehand. Only about eight people or so,” he said. “I’m not a big social media guy when it comes to World Champs.

“You just have to have belief in yourself. My fiancee has my phone if anything big comes up, I have my other phone for the people who are massively important in this process.

“It’s been the same phone since 2021, it’s about making sure I’m focusing on the plan. All I have is the Premier League app, which I’m doing incredibly well on, and Duolingo as I’m trying to learn Spanish.”

Wightman, who has been forced to miss the Championships with a foot problem, saluted Kerr.

“Our little club in Edinburgh has had two back-to-back world champions,” he said.

“That’s hard to believe. Jakob Ingebrigtsen is going to start hating us Brits ain’t he? I think Josh Kerr knew what to do there. You saw when he came on Jakob’s shoulder.

“He showed so much promise for so long, that medal in Tokyo was just the start of this. When Josh Kerr gets it right and when he’s running well, he absolutely flies. I think Ingebrigtsen underestimated how well he was running at the moment.”

Ingebrigtsen said he had a sore throat this week and was feeling “not good”, adding: “I just wasn’t good enough.”

Asked how he views Kerr as a global rival now, he added: “It’s totally different. We have been competitors for a long time, he is a great runner but it is what it is.”

Neil Gourley, who finished ninth in the final, said: “I am really happy for Josh, I could tell this was coming, I knew he would be right up there, the margins are fine at this level.

“I knew he would give Jakob a run for his money this week. The way he has carried himself, the way he has been looking, he has been full of confidence.”

Meanwhile, Great Britain’s Molly Caudery finished fifth in the pole vault, victory shared by Australia’s Nina Kennedy and the USA’s Katie Moon, with a personal best of 4.75m, while Karsten Warholm took the 400m hurdles title.

Anderson Peters is the only Caribbean male athlete nominated for the 2022 World Athletics Male Athlete of the Year.

The 10 nominees were announced on Thursday. The athletes were selected by an international panel of athletics experts, comprising representatives from all six continental areas of World Athletics.

It has been another memorable year for the sport and the nominations reflect some of the standout performances achieved at the World Athletics Championships Oregon22, World Athletics Indoor Championships Belgrade 22, one-day meeting circuits and other events around the world.

The nominees for 2022 Men’s World Athlete of the Year are (in alphabetical order):

Kristjan Ceh, SLO

- World discus champion

- Diamond League discus champion, throwing a national record 71.27m on the circuit in Birmingham

- European discus silver medallist


Alison dos Santos, BRA

- World 400m hurdles champion

- Diamond League 400m hurdles champion

- Ran a world-leading South American record of 46.29


 Mondo Duplantis, SWE

- World pole vault champion indoors and outdoors

- Diamond League and European pole vault champion

- Improved his world record to 6.19m and 6.20m indoors, and then 6.21m outdoors


 Soufiane El Bakkali, MAR

- World 3000m steeplechase champion

- Diamond League 3000m steeplechase champion

- Unbeaten in 2022, running a world-leading 7:58.28 in Rabat


Grant Holloway, USA

- World 110m hurdles champion

- World indoor 60m hurdles champion

- Diamond League 110m hurdles champion


 Jakob Ingebrigtsen, NOR

- World 5000m champion, world 1500m silver medallist indoors and outdoors

- European 1500m and 5000m champion

- Diamond League 1500m champion in a world-leading 3:29.02


Eliud Kipchoge, KEN

- Improved his world marathon record to 2:01:09

- Berlin Marathon champion

- Tokyo Marathon champion


Noah Lyles, USA

- World 200m champion

- Diamond League 200m champion

- Ran a world-leading national record of 19.31 to move to third on the world all-time list


 Anderson Peters, GRN

- World javelin champion

- Commonwealth javelin silver medallist

- Threw a world-leading NACAC record of 93.07m, moving to fifth on the world all-time list


 Pedro Pichardo, POR

- World triple jump champion with a world-leading leap of 17.95m

- World indoor triple jump silver medallist

- European triple jump champion


 A three-way voting process will determine the finalists.

 The World Athletics Council and the World Athletics Family will cast their votes by email, while fans can vote online via the World Athletics social media platforms. Individual graphics for each nominee will be posted on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube this week; a 'like' on Facebook, Instagram and YouTube or a retweet on Twitter will count as one vote.

 The World Athletics Council’s vote will count for 50% of the result, while the World Athletics Family’s votes and the public votes will each count for 25% of the final result.

 Voting for the World Athletes of the Year closes at midnight on Monday 31 October. At the conclusion of the voting process, five women and five men finalists will be announced by World Athletics.

 The winners will be revealed on World Athletics’ social media platforms in early December.




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