World championship

A world championship is generally an international sports competition open to elite competitors from around the world, representing their nations, and winning such an event will be considered the highest or near highest achievement in the sport or contest.

Overview

The title is usually awarded through a combination of specific contests or, less commonly, ranking systems (e.g. the ICC Test Championship), or a combination of the two (e.g. World Triathlon Championships in Triathlon). This determines a 'world champion', who or which is commonly considered the best nation, team, individual (or other entity) in the world in a particular field, although the vagaries of sport ensure that the competitor recognised at the best in an event is not always the 'world champion' (see Underdog).

Certain sports do not have a world championship. Instead, they may organise a world cup competition, or they may organize both, for example cycling (UCI World Championships and UCI World Cups)). Often, the use of the term cup or championship in this sense is just a choice of words. Some sports have multiple champions because of multiple organizations, such as boxing, mixed martial arts and wrestling.

Certain sports do not have a world championship or a world cup as such, but may have one or several world champions. Professional boxing, for example, has several world champions at different weights, but each one of them is decided by a "title fight", not a tournament.

A certain number of sports hold world championships or world cups which are overshadowed, in terms of prestige, by the same events in the Olympic Games, the most prestigious multi-sports event.

Still other sports may or may not have a true world championship but may designate the winners of a domestic competition to be "world champions." This is especially true of the major professional sports leagues in the United States and Canada; world cups and championships exist in all of the major sports, but the domestic U.S. and Canadian leagues are generally nicknamed as the world professional championships or the equivalent of a world club championship. (In American football, although an IFAF World Championship exists, the United States is so far above and beyond the other nations it faces that the winner of the U.S.-based Super Bowl, a competition limited to the 32 teams in the National Football League, is commonly nicknamed as the world champion by the players, the press and fans alike; the NFL itself explicitly marketed the contest as a world championship in its first iterations.)[1]

Finally, certain professional sports do not have a world championship or world cup, but rather hold a series of events recognised as the elite level in their field (e.g. tennis has a series of four Grand Slam events recognised as the pinnacle of the game, in addition to key team events, world tour finals and the Olympic Games, though each year ITF designates a World Champion based on performances throughout the year).

Sports

Best sportsperson by sport

  Still active

This table includes medals for both individual and team events. "Best" in this list is considered to be the sportperson who is on top of their sport's medal table, rather than sportsperson with most overall medals. Currently active competitors are highlighted in pale green. Italics indicates more than one title achieved in a single year.

Male

Category Sport Sportsperson Born Tot. Ref.
Bicycle racing Cycling (road) Fabian Cancellara[2] 1981 4037
Cycling (track) Arnaud Tournant 1978 143219
BMX racing Randy Stumpfhauser 1977 45312
Mountain bike racing (XC) Nino Schurter 1986 74011
Mountain bike racing (DH) Nicolas Vouilloz 1976 100010
Combat sports Boxing Félix Savón 1967 6107
Jiu-Jitsu Roger Gracie 1981 105015
Judo Teddy Riner 1989 101112
Karate Luca Valdesi 1976 62412
Sambo Fedor Emelianenko 1976 4015
Taekwondo Steven López 1978 5005
Wrestling Aleksandr Karelin[3] 1967 9009
Target sports Archery Hans Deutgen 1917–1989 4105
Darts Phil Taylor 1960 16521
Pétanque Philippe Quintais 1967 12 0 4 16
Shooting Konrad Stäheli 1866–1931 41171067 [4]
Cue sports Snooker Joe Davis 1901–1978 15015
Billiards Mike Russell 1969 11819
Racquet sports Badminton Park Joo-bong 1964 5027
Table tennis Viktor Barna 1911–1972 2271241
Tennis[5] John McEnroe 1959 101011
Tennis (team) Roy Emerson 1936 8109
Roller sports Inline speed skating Chad Hedrick 1977 5014468 [6]
Roller artistic skating Roberto Riva 1986 101011 [7]
Water sports Swimming Michael Phelps 1985 266133
Diving Qin Kai 1986 7007
Canoe sprint Ivan Patzaichin 1974 94922
Rowing Daniele Gilardoni 1976 111113 [8]
Sailing Vasco Vascotto 1969 25??? [9]
Winter sports Alpine skiing Kjetil André Aamodt 1971 54312
Biathlon Ole Einar Bjørndalen 1974 20141145
Bobsleigh Eugenio Monti 1928–2003 91010 [10]
Skeleton Gregor Stähli 1968 43310
Luge Armin Zöggeler 1974 65516
Cross-country skiing Bjørn Dæhlie 1967 105419
Ski jumping Janne Ahonen 1977 53210
Nordic combined Bjarte Engen Vik 1971 5308 [11]
Freestyle skiing Edgar Grospiron 1969 3003
Snowboarding Jasey Jay Anderson 1968 4004
Figure skating Ulrich Salchow 1877–1949 113014
Speed skating Sven Kramer[12] 1986 282333
Short track speed skating Ahn Hyun-Soo[13] 1985 2011435
Olympic sports

(summer)

Athletics Usain Bolt 1986 112114
Artistic Gymnastics Vitaly Scherbo 1972 127423
Fencing Stanislav Pozdnyakov 1973 105217
Triathlon Simon Lessing 1971 4217
Weightlifting Vasily Alekseyev 1967 8008
Paralympic sports Athletics Marcel Hug 1986 99119
Team sports Bandy Sergey Lomanov Jr 1980 95115
Baseball
Basketball Krešimir Ćosić 1948–1995 2204
Beach volleyball Emanuel Rego 1973 2103
Curling Randy Ferbey 1959 4105
Field hockey Akhtar Rasool 1954 3104 [14]
Football Pelé 1940 3003
Football (club) Víctor Valdés 1982 2103
Xavi 1980
Handball Thierry Omeyer 1976 5027
Ice Hockey
Volleyball Marco Bracci
Andrea Gardini
Andrea Giani
Ferdinando De Giorgi
1966
1965
1970
1961
3003
Waterpolo Salvador Gómez
Jesús Rollán
1968
1968–2006
2204

Female

Category Sport Sportsperson Born Tot. Ref.
Bicycle racing Cycling (road) Jeannie Longo 1958 93214
Cycling (track)
BMX racing Gabriela Diaz 1981 4217
Mountain bike racing (XC) Gunn-Rita Dahle Flesjå 1980 4206
Mountain bike racing (DH) Anne-Caroline Chausson 1977 9009
Combat sports Boxing Mary Kom 1982 5106
Jiu-Jitsu
Judo Ryoko Tani 1975 7018
Karate
Sambo
Taekwondo Brigitte Yagüe 1981 3215
Wrestling Saori Yoshida 1982 130013
Target sports Archery
Darts
Pétanque
Shooting
Cue sports Snooker
Billiards
Racquet sports Badminton Carolina Marín 1993 3 0 0 3
Table tennis Mária Mednyánszky 1901 18 6 4 28
Tennis[15] Martina Navratilova 1956 19 6 0 25
Tennis (team) Chris Evert 1954 7 1 0 8
Roller sports Inline speed skating
Roller artistic skating
Water sports Swimming Katie Ledecky 1997 141015
Diving Guo Jingjing 1981 111012
Canoe sprint
Rowing
Sailing
Winter sports Alpine skiing Christl Cranz 1914–2004 123015
Biathlon
Bobsleigh
Skeleton
Luge
Cross-country skiing
Ski jumping
Nordic combined
Freestyle skiing
Snowboarding
Figure skating Sonja Henie 1912–1969 101011
Speed skating Ireen Wüst[12] 1986 1817338
Short track speed skating
Orienteering Orienteering Simone Niggli-Luder 1978 232631 [16]
Olympic sports

(summer)

Athletics Allyson Felix 1985 93113
Artistic Gymnastics
Fencing Valentina Vezzali 1974 166426
Triathlon Emma Snowsill 1981 3104
Weightlifting
Paralympic sports Athletics Tatyana McFadden 1989 121112
Sailing Alexandra Rickham 1981 5319 [17]
Team sports Bandy
Baseball
Basketball
Beach volleyball Misty May-Treanor 1977 3104
Kerri Walsh Jennings 1978
Curling Elisabet Gustafson 1964 4 0 2 6
Field hockey
Football Christie Rampone 1975 2125
Football (club)
Handball
Ice Hockey
Volleyball
Waterpolo

Open

Category Sport Sportsperson Born Tot. Ref.
Motor sports Formula One Michael Schumacher 1969 72312
Rallying Sébastien Loeb 1974 91010
Grand Prix Motorcycle racing Giacomo Agostini 1942 155121
Speedway Hans Nielsen 1959 2211841
Motocross Stefan Everts 1972 104113 [18]
Sportscar Derek Bell 1941 2114
Jacky Ickx 1945 2114
Jean-Louis Schlesser 1948 2103
Endurance Timo Bernhard 1981 2002
Brendon Hartley 1989 2002
Touring car racing Yvan Muller 1969 45110
Sidecar racing Steve Webster 1960 104317
(Production) Superbike racing Carl Fogarty 1965 4206
Motorboat racing Guido Cappellini 1959 102214 [19]
Motorboat racing (offshore) Steve Curtis 1964 85417
Air racing Paul Bonhomme 1964 3216
Radio-controlled aerobatics Christophe Paysant-Le Roux 1969 82111 [20][21]
Radio controlled racing Masami Hirosaka 1970 145625 [22]
Trials riding Antoni Bou 1986 160016
Olympic sports Equestrian Reiner Klimke[23] 1936–1999 6006 [24]
Sailing Vasco Vascotto 1969 25??? [9]

Mixed

Category Sport Sportsperson Born Tot. Ref.
Winter sports Figure skating Irina Rodnina 1949 100010
Olympic sports Tennis Serena Williams 1981 2103
Tommy Robredo 1982 2103
James Blake 1979 2002
Dominik Hrbatý 1978 2002
Arantxa Sánchez Vicario 1971 2002
Paralympic sports Sailing Alexandra Rickham &
Niki Birrell
1981
1986
5319 [17][25]

Mind sports

Eating

See also

References

  1. Evans, Simon (February 3, 2011). "Super Bowl contenders happy with world champions title". Reuters. Retrieved February 5, 2014.
  2. Time trial event.
  3. Greco-Roman event.
  4. "Multi-Medalists Top 15" (PDF). issf-sports.org. Retrieved 19 April 2012.
  5. The master, which qualifies the tennis world ranking, is considered the World Championship of individual tennis.
  6. "In-line skating". archive.org. Archived from the original on 2010-11-28. Retrieved 19 April 2012.
  7. "Figure Skating Senior World Championships – Roll of Honour" (PDF). rollersports.org. Retrieved 20 April 2012.
  8. "Daniele Gilardoni". www.worldrowing.com. International Rowing Federation. Retrieved 22 June 2018.
  9. 1 2 http://www.52superseries.com/my-blue-heaven-azzurra-win-the-2015-tp52-world-title/
  10. Bobsleigh world championships multiple medallist
  11. Nordic combined world championships multiple medallist
  12. 1 2 Includes World Allround, World Sprint, and World Single Distance Championships.
  13. Also represented Russia as Viktor An
  14. "WORLD CUP DISTINCTIONS". phf.com.pk. Archived from the original on January 1, 2011. Retrieved 20 April 2012.
  15. The master, which qualifies the tennis world ranking, is considered the World Championship of individual tennis.
  16. "Meine sportlichen Erfolge Weltmeisterschaften" [My sporting achievements World Championships]. www.simoneniggli.ch (in German). Archived from the original on 2018-06-11. Retrieved 2018-06-11.
  17. 1 2 "Alexandra Rickham – Results". sailing.org. Retrieved 24 July 2016.
  18. ca:Stefan Everts
  19. "DAC Racing". class-1.com. Retrieved 20 April 2012.
  20. http://www.gbrcaa.org/Competition%20History/World%20and%20European.htm
  21. http://www.ofremmi.info/f3a/History/WC/history_of_f3a_world_championshi.htm
  22. "Hirosaka, Masami | IFMAR". Rcranking.net. Retrieved 2014-08-20.
  23. Dressage event.
  24. "Reiner Klimke – Results". the-sports.org. Retrieved 20 April 2012.
  25. "Niki Birrell – Results". sailing.org. Retrieved 24 July 2016.
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