Athlete of the Year- award design

I had the greatest honour to design the new ‘Athlete of the Year’- award in collaboration with the Finnish Sports Journalists´ Association (Urheilutoimittajain Liitto). The renewed award will be given at the Finnish Sports Gala (Urheilugaala) on the 12th of January 2023 for the first time.

The award honours the winning athlete as well as the grantor of the prize. It’s inspired by the relay baton, which is passed to the next athlete, like this prize. When the award lies on the table it resembles a press conference nameplate.

The surface is decorated with the award’s name and symbols that illustrate different sports. The award is closed with transparent plugs that also function as a stand and can be opened like a champagne bottle. To honour the history of the award, it contains a list of all the previous winners since 1947 inside it.

The winner from the previous year leaves a message for the next one which will be hidden inside of the award. The Athlete of the Year 2021, Swimmer Matti Mattsson, wrote the first letter and started this new tradition. This ‘secret’ message will be published after the Sports Gala (Finland). 

The Athlete of the Year 2022 is cross-country skier, Iivo Niskanen. Iivo won gold, silver and bronze in the 2022 Beijing Olympics.

The Athlete of the Year 2023 is NBA-player Lauri Markkanen.

Production team:
Concept, design and project management:
Mint Station / Minna Viitalähde
Award manufacturing:
Protohouse Finland / Aki Mertsola
Laser engraving:
Laser Quality Markings / Kim Nivalinna
Gold plating of the award:
Eforit Oy

Image 2: Urheilugaala / Janina Pitkänen
Image 3: Urheilugaala

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