Athletes were nominated by their fellow competitors and the winners were chosen by USA Triathlon Athlete Advisory Council (AAC). The most impressive performance of the year was Gwen Jorgensen’s 2013 ITU World Triathlon Series title–the first ever by an American woman.
“Every year seems to provide such deserving candidates and 2013 was no exception. From our rookies all the way to our ITU superstars, there were so many amazing performances, and picking the winners from our incredible list of nominees was a difficult task,” said Barrett Brandon, chair of the USA Triathlon Athlete Advisory Council.
Jorgensen (St. Paul, Minn.) was named Olympic/ITU Athlete of the Year following her ITU World Triathlon Series sprint-finish win during which she was also named the USA Triathlon Elite National Champion. She also claimed series wins in Yokohama and Stockholm, finishing fourth in the ITU World Triathlon Series Rankings.
Matt Chrabot (Virginia Beach, Va.) and Jarrod Shoemaker (Clermont, Fla.) also earned honors in the Olympic/ITU Athlete of the Year category. As the top-ranked American male in the 2013 ITU World Triathlon Series rankings, Chrabot opened his season with a podium finish at the Mooloolaba ITU World Cup and finished in the top 15 at World Triathlon Series events in San Diego and Auckland. He also won the USA Triathlon Elite National Championships. Shoemaker finished in the top five at late-season ITU World Cup events in Cozumel and Guatape, and was 12th at ITU World Triathlon Yokohama.
Former Canadian Alicia Kaye (Clermont, Fla.) and Cameron Dye (Boulder, Colo.) were named Non-Drafting Athletes of the Year for their successes at domestic Olympic-distance events. Kaye won five Life Time Tri Series events including Austin, Chicago, Dallas, Minneapolis and Tempe. Dye, a repeat winner, also topped the podium at the Dallas, Minneapolis and Tempe events, as well as the Columbia Triathlon and TriRock Philadelphia.
Paratriathletes of the Year were awarded for the first time by USAT and the titles went to Megan Fisher (TRI-5, Seattle, Wash.) and Aaron Scheidies (TRI-6b, Seattle, Wash.). Fisher won her third ITU Paratriathlon Worlds title in September, having also earned wins in the TRI-5 division at USA Paratriathlon Nationals and the Challenged Athletes Foundation (CAF) World Paratriathlon San Diego. Scheidies was the top finisher in the TRI-6b division at USA Paratriathlon Nationals and CAF World Paratriathlon San Diego, and he earned a silver medal at ITU Paratriathlon Worlds.