Nathan Chen and Mariah Bell skated away with the United States Sports Academy’s Athlete of the Month honors for October. The American figure skaters won Skate America titles in the month and earned the most votes in the Academy’s worldwide online ballot.
Chen won his fourth consecutive Skate America title in competition in Las Vegas on 24 October 2020. Chen, 21, finished 25 points ahead of his nearest competitor, easing his way to the gold medal with a final score of 299.15. Chen was previously recognized as the Academy’s 2019 Athlete of the Year.
Bell won her first Grand Prix of Skating title with a victory at Skate America in Las Vegas on 24 October 2020. Bell finished with 212.73 total points to hold off challenger Bradie Tennell.
The second place finisher on the men’s side was Spanish tennis star Rafael Nadal and third place went to American baseball player Corey Seager.
Nadal defeated rival Novak Djokovic of Serbia 6-0, 6-2, 7-5 to win his 13th career French Open title on 11 October 2020. The win was Nadal’s 100th at Roland Garros and his record 20th men’s Grand Slam singles title, tying him for first place with Sweden’s Roger Federer.
The Los Angeles Dodgers shortstop, Seager was named the World Series Most Valuable Player after batting 8-for-20 with two home runs, five RBI, and a .556 on base percentage as the Dodgers defeated the Tampa Bay Rays four games to two in October. Seager became the eighth player ever to be named the MVP of both the World Series and the League Championship Series in the same season.
The second place finisher on the women’s side was Polish tennis player Iga Świątek and third place went to Ethiopian runner Letesenbet Gidey.
Świątek, 19, made history when she defeated American Sofia Kenin 6-4, 6-1 to capture the French Open title on 10 October 2020 in Paris. Świątek, who never lost more than four games in any set in the tournament, became the first Polish player to win a Grand Slam singles title. She is just the sixth unseeded player in the open era to win a Grand Slam.
Gidey broke a world record in the 5,000-meters with a time of 14:06.62 at a meet in Valencia, Spain, on 7 October 2020. Gidey’s time took more than four seconds off the previous record held by her compatriot Tirunesh Dibaba since 2008.