Tuesday, September 23, 2008

BOLT....


Yup, the Fastest Man on Earth - Usain Bolt. As many of you know, I was at the Beijing Olympics last month and I was very blessed to have watched many heart stopping moments. One of which was Usain Bolt cracking the World and Olympic records for 100m and 200m - and of course being the 3rd runner of the 4x100m team which also won it in World Record time. He instantly became an icon as far as the Olympics and World Sports is concerned. I was the only one who kept telling everyone that this 22 year old will be the one to watch at the Games. No one really gave a s**t, cos' he was underrated. I watched him equal the World Record in the Reebok Grand Prix in New York and since then I have followed his progress to his amazing achievements at the Olympics.

I have reseached for some material on him below. Do read. I do hope to get more soon.


Usain Bolt
(born 21 August 1986) is a Jamaican sprinter. Bolt holds the Olympics and World Records for the 100 metres at 9.69 seconds, the 200 metres at 19.30 seconds and, along with his teammates, the 4x100 metres relay at 37.10 seconds, all set at the 2008 Summer Olympics. Bolt became the first man to win all three events at a single Olympics since Carl Lewis in 1984, and the first man in history to set world records in all three at a single Olympics. His name and achievements in sprinting have earned him the media nickname "'Lightning' Bolt". Bolt distinguished himself with a 200 m gold medal at the 2002 World Junior Championships, making him the competition's youngest-ever gold medallist. In 2004, at the CARIFTA Games, Bolt became the first junior sprinter to run the 200 m in under 20 seconds with a time of 19.93 s, breaking Roy Martin's world junior record by two-tenths of a second. Bolt also set competition records at a number of other junior events.

Bolt turned professional in 2004 but missed most of his first two seasons due to injuries; he was eliminated in the first round of the 200 m heats at the 2004 Summer Olympics. In 2007, Bolt beat Don Quarrie's 200 m Jamaican national record with a run of 19.75 s. In May 2008, Bolt set his first 100 m world record with 9.72 s, improving upon his personal best of 9.76 s made earlier in the month.

Bolt was born in Trelawny, Jamaica, on 21 August 1986 and grew up with his parents, Jennifer and Wellesley Bolt, a brother, and his sister Sherine. His parents ran the local grocery store in the rural area and Bolt spent his time playing cricket and football in the street with his brother, later saying, "When I was young I didn’t really think about anything other than sports". As a child, he attended Waldensia Primary and All-age School and it was here where he first began to show his sprinting potential, running in the annual, national primary schools' meeting for his parish. By the age of twelve Bolt had become the school's fastest runner over the 100 metres distance.

Upon his entry to William Knibb Memorial High School, Bolt continued to focus on other sports, but his cricket coach noticed Bolt's speed on the pitch and urged him to try track and field events.[8] Pablo McNeil, a former 100 metres Olympic athlete, and Dwayne Barrett coached Bolt, encouraging him to focus his energy on improving his athletic abilities. The school had a history of athletic success with past students, including sprinter Michael Green. Bolt won his first annual high school championships medal in 2001, taking the silver medal in the 200 metres with a time of 22.04 seconds. McNeil soon became his primary coach and the two enjoyed a positive partnership, though McNeil was occasionally frustrated by Bolt's lack of dedication to his training and predisposition to practical jokes.

Bolt announced that he would double-up with the 100 metres and 200 metres events at the Beijing Summer Olympics, and the new 100 m world-record holder was the favourite to win both. Michael Johnson, the 200 m and 400 m record holder, personally backed the sprinter, saying he did not believe that a lack of experience would work against him. Bolt qualified for the final with 9.92 and 9.85 s in the quarter-finals and semifinals respectively. In the Olympic 100 m final, Bolt broke new ground, winning in 9.69 s. This was an improvement upon his own world record, and he was well ahead of second-place finisher Richard Thompson, who finished in 9.89 s. Not only was the record set without a favourable wind (+0.0 m/s), but also he visibly slowed down to celebrate before he finished and his shoelace was untied. Bolt's coach reported that, based upon the speed of Bolt's opening 60 m, he could have finished with a time of 9.52 s. Following scientific analysis of Bolt's run by the Institute of Theoretical Astrophysics at the University of Oslo, Hans Eriksen and his colleagues also predicted a sub 9.60 s time. Considering factors such as Bolt's position, acceleration and velocity in comparison to second placed Thompson, the team estimated that Bolt could have finished in 9.55 s had he not slowed to celebrate before the finishing line.

Bolt stated that setting a record was not a priority for him, and that his goal was just to win the gold medal, Jamaica's first of the 2008 Games. Olympic medallist Kriss Akabusi IOC president Jacques Rogge also condemned the Jamaican's actions as disrespectful. Bolt denied that this was the purpose of his celebration by saying "I wasn't bragging. When I saw I wasn't covered, I was just happy." Lamine Diack, president of the IAAF, supported Bolt and said his celebration was appropriate given the circumstances of his victory. Jamaican government minister Edmund Bartlett also defended Bolt's actions, stating, "We have to see it in the glory of their moment and give it to them. We have to allow the personality of youth to express itself." construed Bolt's chest slapping before the finish line as showboating, noting that the actions cost Bolt an even faster record time.

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