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UPDATE: Usain St. Leo Bolt becomes Olympic immortal

- as Jamaica wins 4x100m relay gold
August 20th, 2016 | Tags:
Usain St Leo Bolt celebrates winning gold in the 4x100m relay on August 19, 2016. Photo: Twitter
On a muggy Sunday night in Rio, the Jamaican superstar Usain St Leo Bolt won the signature event in track and field in a runaway and added this line to his already gleaming resume: first person to capture three straight 100-metre titles at the Olympics. Getty Images
On a muggy Sunday night in Rio, the Jamaican superstar Usain St Leo Bolt won the signature event in track and field in a runaway and added this line to his already gleaming resume: first person to capture three straight 100-metre titles at the Olympics. Getty Images
Usain Bolt starts celebrating as he crosses the finish line. Photo: GETTY IMAGES
Usain Bolt starts celebrating as he crosses the finish line. Photo: GETTY IMAGES
CNN

RIO DE JANEIRO, Brazil- Four years ago, Canut Lawrence made himself a promise.

A track and field enthusiast from Jamaica but living and working in Canada, he traveled to the Olympics in London and watched on in awe as Usain Bolt walked away with three gold medals for the second Games in a row.

Lawrence was inspired and swore he would follow the world's fastest man to Brazil, where his compatriot would bid to complete a historic "triple-triple" of sprint titles at Rio 2016.

On a hot, humid night Friday, both men made good on their word.

As Bolt streaked across the finish line to a thunderous ovation in the men's 4x100-meter relay, Lawrence rejoiced.

"He symbolizes pride, he really symbolizes what Jamaica is all about," Lawrence told CNN. "Growing up in humble circumstances and rising above difficult situations.

"Jamaicans are extremely proud to see a boy of the soil, not somebody who was born into wealth. This is a young man who came from a very small district in Trelawny. To see what he has accomplished, it is phenomenal.

"Just to be here, to see history being made, I can't tell you how that feels."

While Lawrence was lost for words, Bolt summed it up perfectly.

"There you go," he said. "I'm the greatest."

Running the anchor leg, as he had done in the previous Games, Bolt surged away from the Japanese quartet who took a surprise silver medal.

Taking the baton from Nickel Ashmeade after Asafa Powell and Yohan Blake had made the early running, Bolt charged home to record a time of 37.27.

The USA was third across the line but was later disqualified for what appeared to be a handover violation, with Canada moving up to bronze medal position. The Americans appealed the decision and USA Track and Field tweeted early Saturday that it expected a decision in the morning.

Although he alone goes down in the record books with nine gold medals, Bolt was quick to thank his teammates for their contribution.

"My team came through for me tonight," added Bolt, who turns 30 on Sunday. "As long as we got the baton round, it was never in doubt."

As the final running of perhaps the greatest show on earth was taking place on the track, empty seats were once again visible in the stadium.

Nonetheless, the considerable crowd that had gathered in the stadium once again chanted his name, as the now familiar sounds of Bob Marley signaled another Jamaican sprint triumph.

And for the third time in less than a week, Bolt knelt down and kissed the track. A final gesture to the Games that made him an icon.

"He deserves all of the accolades," Lawrence said. "There will never be another Usain Bolt. He has the talent, the skill, the charisma, he's very playful. And people love that."

Lawrence has never met Bolt, although he did take pictures with his dad in London.

If he did meet the man behind his trip to South America, what would he say?

"Continue being who you are, continue being humble, continue being that being that effervescent person that you are," Lawrence replied. "Don't change for anyone. We're loving the way he is."

And after achieving a feat no Olympian in history has managed, Bolt knows how he wants to celebrate.

"I'm going to stay up late and have fun," he said. "I never knew this would happen when I started out."

See previous article published August 15, 2016

Usain St Leo Bolt makes history in Rio

- with third successive Olympics 100m gold medal

DAILY TELEGRAPH

If there were any doubts, it took less than 10 seconds - 9.81, to be exact - for Usain St Leo Bolt to erase them.

He is the Olympic champion once again.

On a muggy Sunday night in Rio, the Jamaican superstar won the signature event in track and field in a runaway and added this line to his already gleaming resume: first person to capture three straight 100-metre titles at the Olympics.

The 6-foot-5 sprinter overcame his typically slow unfurling from the blocks, gradually worked up speed, caught American Justin Gatlin with 40 metres left and was celebrating - pointing at his chest with his thumb - before he crossed the finish line. 

Bolt beat Gatlin, who was greeted by the fans with raucous boos, by .08 seconds. Andre de Grasse of Canada won the bronze.

Chants of "Bolt, Bolt, Bolt" rang out from the near-capacity stadium. The show lived up to its billing.

No, this wasn't Bolt at his fastest - or even his best. The man who burst onto the scene with his hot-dogging world record eight years ago in Beijing turns 30 after these Olympics and says these will be his last. 

"I am a living legend," he said. "Somebody said if I win these three gold medals I would be immortal and I kind of liked it. So I'm going to run with that one.

"I'm happy and I'm proud of myself. It wasn't perfect execution, but I'm proud of myself. I wanted to set myself apart from everybody else and this is the Olympics, I have to do it.

"I came to this Olympics to win three gold medals, to prove myself again as one of the greats."

Usain Bolt may remain the fastest man on the planet, but he is by no means its fastest starter. Of the eight runners, Bolt was second slowest to react to the starter's gun, clocking a 0.155 second reaction time.

All of which only makes his ability to keep winning even more remarkable.

5 Responses to “UPDATE: Usain St. Leo Bolt becomes Olympic immortal”

  • dog (16/08/2016, 14:21) Like (2) Dislike (0) Reply
    speed speed speed
  • Questioner Man (17/08/2016, 17:17) Like (7) Dislike (2) Reply
    GO USAIN GO!!! Jamaicans put the Caribbean on the map.!!! Nuff respect to Jamaica
    • Retire---Naaah (07/04/2017, 12:33) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
      They will give him 100 million to run. He is money. Money they need. Will not retire.. They / we need that crowd. That excitement... They need the money.
  • A Special man. (24/10/2016, 13:22) Like (1) Dislike (0) Reply
    Bolt is the number one Athlete in the Caribbean ever. Study shows 2nd most popular Caribbean person after Bob Marley. Study show he is the top 6 Athlete ever in the world.
  • My #1 Athlete ever. (07/04/2017, 12:30) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    The two greatest athletes my eyes eve watch are Bolt and Michael Jordan. I will put Bolt number one Jordan #2... This talent only come around every hundred years. .God gave us something special when he created Bolt.


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