It’s January, which means the International Weightlifting Federation has opened up voting for the 2017 IWF Lifter of the Year — and the competition is fierce.
The 2016 winners were Iran’s Kianoush Rostami and Thailand’s Sopita Tanasan, both of whom won gold at the Rio Olympics.
[Sopita Tanasan discussed meditation and motivation in a rare interview with BarBend — read it here!]
When voting was opened to decide the 2016 winners, there were six candidates of each sex, but this year the number has been cut down to five men and five women. Tanasan is a contender once again, though Rostami didn’t make the cut this time around — possibly because an injury at the World Weightlifting Championship prevented him from completing any clean & jerks.
We’ve listed all ten nominees below, each of whom won the world champion title for their weight class.
Ihab Mahmoud, -77kg, Egypt
Arley Mendez, -85kg, Chile
Sohrab Moradi, -94kg, Iran
Francisco Mosquera Valencia, -62kg, Colombia
Lasha Talakhadze, +105kg, Georgia
Kuo Hsing-Chun, -58kg, Taipei
Chanu Saikhon Mirabai, -48kg, India
Sarah Robles, +90kg, USA
Sopita Tanasan,-53kg, Thailand
Lidia Valentin Perez, -75kg, Spain
[Check out Sarah Robles’ massive 205-kilogram front squat she made during her training for the World Championship!]
The winners will each receive a Jenő Boskovics Lifter of the Year Trophy. It’s named after the Hungarian weightlifting journalist who worked as the Press Chief and Spokesman of the IWF for several decades and served as the editor-in-chief of World Weightlifting Magazine from 1980 until his death in 2010.
If you want to help decide who takes home the trophy and the title of Lifter of the Year, head over to the voting page right here to make your voice heard. Just don’t spend too much time landing on your choice, as voting closes on January 31st.
Featured image via @iwfnet on Instagram.