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Joy Udo-Gabriel Biography: Inside The Life Of Nigerian Sprinter

Nigeria's Joy Udo-Gabriel reacts after competing in the Women's 4x100m Relay heats at the 2019 IAAF Athletics World Championships at the Khalifa International stadium in Doha on October 4, 2019. (Photo by Jewel SAMAD / AFP) (Photo by JEWEL SAMAD/AFP via Getty Images)

Joy Udo-Gabriel is a sprinter from Nigeria. She took bronze in the 100m at the 2018 African Championships. She took bronze in the 4 x 100-meter relay at the 2018 Commonwealth Games. She won a gold medal in the 4 x 100-meter relay at the 2019 African Games. She also won a gold medal in the 4 x 100-meter relay at the 2022 Commonwealth Games.

Early Life and Education

Joy Udo-Gabriel was born on June 2, 1999, in Lagos State, Nigeria. She attended primary and secondary school in Lagos State, Nigeria, before enrolling in Lagos State University for tertiary education.

Joy Udo-Gabriel has dominated the track since becoming the fastest schoolgirl in Lagos State at the age of 16 in 2015. “The race is for the legs, and the law is for the intellect!” she famously said when asked how she planned to balance her education and athletics. She was discovered at the Benin Auditions for the Top Sprinter Reality Show, which is produced by Making of Champions.


Joy began competing in her first National Senior Trials in 2016. Udo-Gabriel competed in her first MoC competition, winning her heat at the 2016 National Junior Championships. Her exceptional performance earned her the MoC Student-Athlete Scholarship, which was sponsored by the oil and gas company ARCO Group. She won silver in the 100 and 200 meters at the AFN/MoC National U-20 Championship later that month.

Udo-career Gabriel’s was transformed in 2018 when she competed for Nigeria for the first time at the Commonwealth Games in Australia. On her debut for Nigeria, she ran a Personal Best (PB) of 11.42s in the 100m to qualify for the semifinals, and then ran an outstanding lead leg to win the 4x100m Bronze with a time of 42.75s, her first-ever medal for Nigeria. Udo-Gabriel added seven more international medals for Nigeria in 2018, capping off a breakout year for her. She won the 100-meter and 200-meter sprint double, as well as the 4100-meter silver medal, at the 2018 ECOWAS (West African) U-20 Championships in Cape Coast.

In 2018, the rising star won the 100-meter bronze medal and the 4100-meter gold medal at her first African Senior Championships in Asaba. Udo-Gabriel added to her international success by winning silver in the 4x100m relay for the University of Lagos at the 2018 West Africa University Games (WAUG) in Port Harcourt.

Udo-Gabriel won the 100m bronze at her first National Sports Festival (NSF) in Abuja in 2018, capping off the year by winning Discovery of the Year at the Nigerian Sports Awards. She then went on to shine for Nigeria at the 2019 World Relays in Japan, winning the 4x100m gold and finishing third in the 100m dash at the 2019 African Games in Rabat. She also made her World Championships debut in the 4x100m at the 2019 Doha Games, capping off her meteoric rise to becoming a regular member of Nigeria’s senior team at the age of 20.

Udo-Gabriel won 16 of 22 events in the 100 and 200 meters in 2019, competing for MoC Track Club in meets in Southern Africa (Botswana) and Europe. Udo-Gabriel aspires to compete in the Olympics in 2021 and represent Nigeria. She also won a gold medal in the 4 x 100m relay with Ofili Favour, Chukwuma Rosemary, Nwokocha Nzubechi Grace, and Tobi Amusan at the 2022 Commonwealth Games.


  • 1 x Commonwealth Games winner
  • 1 x In the Top 8 at the World Championships
  • 1 x All-African Games winner
  • 1 x Commonwealth Games Bronze medallist


  • Commonwealth Games 4x100m Bronze Medallist
  • African Senior 100m Bronze Medallist & 4x100m Champion
  • West African (ECOWAS) U-20 100m/200m Champion & 4x100m Silver Medallist
  • West African University Games (WAUG) 100m Champion & 4x100m Silver Medallist
  • The National Sports Festival 100m Bronze Medallist
  • National U-20 100m Champion & 200m Silver Medallist
  • Nigeria Sports Awards: Discovery of the Year 2018


  • AFN/MoC National Junior (U20) 100m & 200m Silver Medallist


  • Top Sprinter/Lagos Relays Women’s 4x100m Champion
  • Top Sprinter Junior 100 and 200m Champion
  • Eko Athletics Grand Prix, 100 m Bronze Medallist
  • AFN Golden League B Final 100m Winner


  • Top Sprinter Benin Auditions 100m Winner
  • Lagos State Schools Sports Festival 100m Champion


  • National Schools Sports Festival 100m Silver Medallist
  • National Schools Sports Festival 4x100m Champion

Personal Bests

  • 100 metres–11.34 (+0.3 m/s,Yaba Tech MOC Grand Prix 2021)
  • 200 metres–23.92 (-0.8 m/s, Yabatech MOC Grand Prix 2021)

Competition Record

2018Commonwealth GamesGold Coast, Australia9th (sf)100 m11.53
2018Commonwealth GamesGold Coast, Australia3rd4 × 100 m relay42.75
2018African ChampionshipsAsaba, Nigeria3rd100 m11.58
2018African ChampionshipsAsaba, Nigeria1st4 × 100 m relay43.77
2019World RelaysYokohama, Japan17th (h)4 × 100 m relay45.07
2019African GamesRabat, Morocco4th100 m11.44
2019African GamesRabat, Morocco1st4 × 100 m relay44.16
2019World ChampionshipsDoha, Qatar10th (h)4 × 100 m relay43.05

Net Worth

Her net worth is unavailable.

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