Bolt wins 200m and declares: 'I am now a living legend'

Aug 10, 2012
Gavin Mortimer

Few will disagree with sprinter after he became first Olympian to defend 100m and 200m titles

Streeter Lecka

TEAM GB may have added three more golds to its collection on Thursday but the day belonged to Bolt.

In winning the 200m with an imperious burst of sprinting, Usain Bolt confirmed he is the greatest short distance specialist in the history of track and field.

"I'm now a living legend," he proclaimed to the world in the aftermath of the thrilling race. "I'm also the greatest athlete to live."

As he had four days earlier in the final of the 100m, the 25-year-old Jamaican left his rivals in his wake as he crossed the line in 19.32 seconds. It was just outside the Olympic record of 19.30 but if Bolt will insist on strolling the last 30 metres what can he expect?

Then, in a show of bravado never before witnessed in a sprint final, Bolt performed half a dozen press ups on the track. Love him or loathe him, you can't take your eyes off Bolt.

Bolt is now the first sprinter to retain both the 100m and 200m Olympic titles and barring a dropped baton he'll also add another 4x100m relay gold to his medal cabinet on Saturday.

The health of Jamaican sprinting has never been better with Yohan Blake taking silver (as he did in the 100m) and Warren Weir finishing third.

Blake finished a metre behind Bolt but Weir and the rest of the field were a good five metres down on the victor, who exploded from his blocks and had the race won as he roared round the bend in lane 7.

Asked later if he wanted to become the first man in Olympic history to win three consecutive 100m titles, Bolt hinted he would be at Rio in 2016: "I am not ready to retire. I love this sport. The rest of the season I am just going to have fun because I did what I came here to do."

But his mood darkened when he was asked about the man he's usurped as the greatest post-war sprinter. American Carl Lewis won the 100m titles in the 1984 and 1988 Olympics, and also took gold in the 200m in 1984, but has in the past expressed concern about the efficiency of Jamaica's doping procedure.

Bolt reacted angrily when the subject was raised in the post-race press conference: "I'm going to say something controversial right now," declared Bolt. "Carl Lewis, I have no respect for him... that was really sad for me when I heard the other day what he was saying. It was upsetting. I've lost all respect for him."

Asked to clarify which of Lewis's comments had upset him, Bolt said: "It was all about drugs. Talking about drugs. For me, an athlete out of the sport to be saying that. That was really upsetting for me."

Bolt's stunning display was the fitting end to another day that saw Britain rack up three more golds – all thanks to girl power. Jade Jones, just 19, beat Yuzhuo Hou of China to win the women's -57kg Taekwondo title. Nicola Adams made history by becoming the first female boxer to win an Olympic gold medal when she outfought China's Ren Cancan in the flyweight final and Charlotte Dujardin won gold in the dressage.

Team GB remain third in the overall medal table with 52, 25 of which are gold. Talking of golds, Australia is now up six. Well done, Australia, keep up the effort.

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Usain Bolt is simply phenomenal, even after a year of injury. What's even more incredible is Jamaica taking the top three spots. Jamaica – population half that of Scotland's, 50 years since Jamaican Independence – beats USA, South Africa, France, the rest of the world three times over. How incredible is that?

Greatest athlete my left butt cheek! I am quicly losing respect for this guy. He used to seem cheeky and funny and is turning into a grotesque egomaniac. Fast yes, but only at very short distances. He needs to get over himself.

I agree with you. He should be a bit more humble and he isn't a legend. All he is doing is putting people off him....