I’ve always been interested in all-round talented athletes, and occasionally the subject of the best all-round sprinters pops up on message boards. So I’ve set about in creating a definitive list of both the men’s and women’s all-round sprinters.

This is based solely on PBs and doesn’t take medals into consideration, so the fairest and most widely-accepted method of creating such a list is by using the IAAF scoring tables, which assign a points value to athletics performances.

The spreadsheet I created actually covers 180 sprinters, but it had to go that deep to ensure I didn’t miss anyone of note. I’ve listed the top 100 below, and now that the difficult work has been done in compiling it, I’ll try to maintain it year-on-year. So if you have any amendments/additions, please get in touch or leave a comment below.

A few things to note: Where electronically-timed PBs don’t exist for an athlete, I have included hand-timed performances, but 0.24 has been added for 100m & 200m hand-timed marks and 0.14 for 400m. Altitude-aided marks have been included, so too have indoor marks (which were scored with the IAAF indoor scoring tables). Wind-assisted marks and relay splits have not been included.

While some people discount certain performances of some athletes for various reasons (i.e. the belief that they were wind-assisted or drug-assisted), for argument’s sake I have simply included any and all performances that are recognised by the IAAF. That includes marks like Flo Jo’s 10.49 world record, but doesn’t include any disqualified performances as a result of a drugs ban.

Update: 6 January 2015

The new year has brought with it a new update to this list. At the end of 2014, there were three additions to this list: Kamaria Brown (51st), Myriam Soumare (74th) and Anyika Onuora (=99th).

Significantly, though, the IAAF scoring tables were altered in mid-2014, so I have updated all of the scores to reflect the new system. There were few changes of note and the positions roughly stayed the same, but the new system gives extra points to the better marks and fewer points to the weaker marks. It means the gaps between the athletes at the top are more pronounced and list leader Koch now exceeds 3800 points.

I have also added in a column to denote the athletes’ nationalities, which means you can sort the list by country.

PosScoreAthleteNat100m200m400m
13809Marita KochGER10.83 (1237)21.71 (1268)47.60 (1304)
23792Florence Griffith-JoynerUSA10.49 (1314)21.34 (1308)50.89 (1170)
33777Marion JonesUSA10.65 (1277)21.62 (1278)49.59 (1222)
43726Gwen TorrenceUSA10.82 (1239)21.72 (1267)49.64 (1220)
53725Marie-Jose PerecFRA10.96 (1209)21.99 (1239)48.25 (1277)
63717Allyson FelixUSA10.89 (1224)21.69 (1271)49.59 (1222)
73713Valerie BriscoUSA10.99 (1202)21.81 (1258)48.83 (1253)
83712Irina PrivalovaRUS10.77 (1251)21.87 (1251)49.89 (1210)
93709Jarmila KratochvilovaCZE11.09 (1180)21.97 (1241)47.99 (1288)
103694Merlene OtteyJAM10.74 (1257)21.64 (1276)51.12 (1161)
113692Sanya Richards-RossUSA10.97 (1206)22.09 (1228)48.70 (1258)
123688Barbel WockelGER10.95 (1211)21.85 (1254)49.56 (1223)
133672Grace JacksonJAM11.08 (1182)21.72 (1267)49.57 (1223)
143671Evelyn AshfordUSA10.76 (1253)21.83 (1256)51.08 (1162)
153669Veronica Campbell-BrownJAM10.76 (1253)21.74 (1265)52.24i (1151)
163655Chandra CheeseboroughUSA11.13 (1172)21.99 (1239)49.05 (1244)
173650Pauline Davis-ThompsonBAH10.97 (1206)22.27 (1209)49.28 (1235)
183649Pam MarshallUSA11.01 (1198)21.93 (1245)49.99 (1206)
193634Kathy CookGBR11.10 (1178)22.10 (1227)49.43 (1229)
203633Sherone SimpsonJAM10.82 (1239)22.00 (1238)51.25 (1156)
213627Kerron StewartJAM10.75 (1255)21.99 (1239)51.83 (1133)
223622Irena SzewinskaPOL11.13 (1172)22.21 (1216)49.29 (1234)
233620Cathy FreemanAUS11.24 (1148)22.25 (1211)48.63 (1261)
243619LaTasha ColanderUSA10.97 (1206)22.34 (1202)49.87 (1211)
253616Falilat OgunkoyaNGR11.19 (1159)22.22 (1215)49.10 (1242)
263605Inger MillerUSA10.79 (1246)21.77 (1262)52.76 (1097)
273604Sandra MyersESP11.06 (1187)22.38 (1198)49.67 (1219)
283601Evette de KlerkRSA11.06 (1187)22.06 (1231)50.57 (1183)
293600Dawn SowellUSA10.78 (1248)22.04 (1233)53.08i (1119)
303595Olga BryzginaUKR11.2h (1127)22.44 (1192)48.27 (1276)
313594Joanna AtkinsUSA11.02 (1195)22.27 (1209)50.39 (1190)
323593Dannette Young-StoneUSA11.06 (1187)22.18 (1219)50.46 (1187)
323593Ewa WitkowskaPOL10.93 (1215)22.13 (1224)51.30 (1154)
343592Grit BreuerGER11.13 (1172)22.45 (1191)49.42 (1229)
353591Carmelita JeterUSA10.64 (1280)22.11 (1226)53.08 (1085)
363589Yuliya GushchinaRUS11.13 (1172)22.53 (1182)49.28 (1235)
373588Gesine WaltherGER11.13 (1172)22.24 (1212)50.03 (1204)
383585Tatana KocembovaCZE11.31 (1133)22.47 (1189)48.59 (1263)
383585Juliet CuthbertJAM10.83 (1237)21.75 (1264)53.1h (1084)
403582Carlette GuidryUSA10.94 (1213)22.14 (1223)51.51 (1146)
413581MeLisa BarberUSA10.95 (1211)22.37 (1199)50.87 (1171)
423563Muriel HurtisFRA10.96 (1209)22.31 (1205)51.41 (1149)
433558Svetlana GoncharenkoRUS11.13 (1172)22.46 (1190)50.23 (1196)
443556Kim GevaertBEL11.04 (1191)22.20 (1217)51.45 (1148)
453554Christina BrehmerGER11.18 (1161)22.61 (1174)49.66 (1219)
453554Juliet CampbellJAM11.15 (1167)22.50 (1186)50.11 (1201)
473551Angella IssajenkoCAN10.97 (1206)22.25 (1211)51.81 (1134)
483549Aleksandra FedorivaRUS11.28 (1139)22.19 (1218)51.18i (1192)
493546Ionela TirleaROU11.30 (1135)22.35 (1201)49.88 (1210)
493546Shericka WilliamsJAM11.34 (1127)22.50 (1186)49.32 (1233)
513544Kamaria BrownUSA11.39 (1116)22.50i (1226)50.94i (1202)
523543Mary OnyaliNGR10.97 (1206)22.07 (1230)52.50 (1107)
533542Svetlana PospelovaRUS11.32 (1131)22.39 (1197)49.80 (1214)
533542Silke-Beate KnollGER11.17 (1163)22.29 (1207)50.85 (1172)
553539Kirsten EmmelmannGER11.23 (1150)22.50 (1186)50.07 (1203)
563538Michelle CollinsUSA11.19 (1159)22.57 (1178)50.11 (1201)
563538Ebonie FloydUSA11.13 (1172)22.32 (1204)51.10 (1162)
583537Mikele BarberUSA11.02 (1195)22.73 (1162)50.63 (1180)
593536Diane DixonUSA11.27 (1142)22.53 (1182)49.84 (1212)
603535Merlene FrazerJAM11.20 (1157)22.18 (1219)51.18 (1159)
613534Natasha HastingsUSA11.24 (1148)22.61 (1174)49.84 (1212)
613534Natalya BochinaRUS11.14 (1169)22.19 (1218)51.47 (1147)
633531Lyudmila KondrateyevaRUS11.02 (1195)22.31 (1205)51.87 (1131)
643529Tatyana AlekseyevaRUS11.16 (1165)22.77 (1158)49.98 (1206)
653528Christine ArronFRA10.73 (1259)22.26 (1210)53.76 (1059)
663525Melinda Gainsford-TaylorAUS11.12 (1174)22.23 (1214)51.73 (1137)
673523Charity OparaNGR11.40 (1114)22.60 (1175)49.29 (1234)
683522Laverne Jones-FerretteISV11.07 (1185)22.46 (1190)51.47 (1147)
693519Tonette DyerUSA11.20 (1157)22.34 (1202)51.15 (1160)
703515Monique HennaganUSA11.26 (1144)22.87 (1148)49.56 (1223)
703515Maya AzarashviliGEO11.08 (1182)22.24 (1212)52.13 (1121)
723514Debbie FergusonBAH10.91 (1220)22.19 (1218)53.30 (1076)
723514Shalonda SolomonUSA10.90 (1222)22.15 (1222)53.47 (1070)
743513Myriam SoumareFRA11.03 (1193)22.11 (1226)52.83 (1094)
753511Damaryanthi DarshaSRI11.19 (1159)22.48 (1188)51.05 (1164)
753511Mona-Lisa PursiainenFIN11.19 (1159)22.39 (1197)51.27 (1155)
773510Raelene BoyleAUS11.20 (1157)22.45 (1191)51.08 (1162)
783509Shelly-Ann Fraser-PryceJAM10.70 (1266)22.09 (1228)54.93 (1015)
793508Katharine MerryGBR11.34 (1127)22.76 (1159)49.59 (1222)
803504Christine OhuruoguGBR11.35 (1125)22.85 (1150)49.41 (1229)
813503Celena Mondie-MilnerUSA11.17 (1163)22.55 (1180)51.14 (1160)
813503Angela BaileyCAN10.98 (1204)22.64 (1171)51.96 (1128)
813503Carol RodriguezPUR11.28 (1139)22.23 (1214)51.39 (1150)
843500Heide SeyerlingRSA11.35 (1125)22.63 (1172)50.05 (1203)
853498Monique HendersonUSA11.34 (1127)22.71 (1164)49.96 (1207)
853498Cydonie MothersillCAY11.08 (1182)22.39 (1197)52.18 (1119)
873497Alexandria AndersonUSA10.91 (1220)22.60 (1175)52.63 (1102)
873497Sevatheda FynesBAH10.91 (1220)22.32 (1204)53.40 (1073)
893495Crystal CoxUSA11.31 (1133)22.58 (1177)50.52 (1185)
903492LaTasha JenkinsUSA11.02 (1195)22.29 (1207)52.95 (1090)
913491Fatima Yusuf-OlukojuNGR11.69 (1054)22.28 (1208)49.43 (1229)
913491Vineta IkaunieceLAT11.34 (1127)22.49 (1187)50.71 (1177)
913491Bianca KnightUSA11.07 (1185)22.35 (1201)52.55 (1105)
943490Marita PayneCAN11.43 (1108)22.62 (1173)49.91 (1209)
953487Christine AmertilBAH11.43 (1108)22.58 (1177)50.09 (1202)
953487Myriam ManiCMR10.98 (1204)22.41 (1195)53.0h (1088)
973486Tania Van Heer-MurphyAUS11.29 (1137)22.42 (1194)51.28 (1155)
983484Anita HowardUSA11.14 (1169)22.85 (1150)51.01 (1165)
993483Shaunae MillerBAH11.40 (1114)22.45 (1191)50.70 (1178)
993483Anyika OnuoraGBR11.18 (1161)22.64 (1171)51.38 (1151)

(Thanks to stats from ATFS, David Reid, Jim Rorick and Mirko Jalava)

7 Comments

  1. ID says: January 15, 2014 • 16:01:29

    Great list, J – so annoying that Jones is so far up (accepting your methodology, of course) – no way she was clean when she ran those altitude assisted) short sprint times. Delighted that Kathy Cook makes the top 20!

  2. Bob Bobbins says: April 13, 2014 • 20:29:29

    Good list, well-researched.

    Shows how good Kathy Cook was. How many of those above her do you think were ‘clean’.
    Evelyn Ashford maybe? Grace Jackson possibly? Couldn’t make any sort of case for any of the others….

    BB

  3. Gary Cawker says: April 26, 2014 • 20:52:16

    Great list! Look forward to more of the same.

  4. Upton Upshaw says: January 7, 2015 • 16:07:04

    Lorraine Fenton 11.71, 22.63 and 49.30

  5. Jon Mulkeen says: January 7, 2015 • 16:37:24

    Those marks give her a score of 3456, which means she misses out on making the top 100.

  6. D Knight says: January 7, 2015 • 17:06:50

    Excellent list, and great job here!Gwen Torrance stands out to me as the best all around CLEAN athlete. She caught a LOT of flack for being honest about athletes she felt were tainted. She needs to be rewarded for her stance back then on what is painfully obvious today!

  7. Edward says: January 13, 2015 • 14:53:54

    Its a real shame. The top three is held by persons with suspect performances. Jones was in no way clean when she ran the 10.65 and the records implicate Koch. Not to mention the wind aided FloJo time and the other suspect times she clocked while performing. The real list starts at Gwen.

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