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Sunday, 6 August 2017

Usain Bolt has ran his last 100m race

Usain Bolt's last-ever 100m final ended in shock here at the World Athletics Championships as the eight-time Olympic champion was beaten to gold by America's Justin Gatlin.

The Jamaican, who will retire at the end of the championships following the 4x100m relay next weekend, was instead forced to settle for bronze after clocking in at 9.95 seconds. His American rival stormed to victory in 9.92 secs to claim his third world title.
Christian Coleman completed a one-two for America, taking silver with a time of 9.94 secs. This marks the first time that Bolt has failed to take gold in any 100m final at the Olympics and World Championships.
Michael Johnson had said ahead of the competition that Bolt was “more vulnerable” than ever in his bid to retain his title as ‘the fastest man on earth’.

On the big occasion here at the London Stadium, the American’s words proved prescient as the 30-year-old struggled to reach the same stellar heights of five years ago that saw him clinch Olympic gold in the 100m and 200m finals.

After a disappointing performance in the first-round heats, which Bolt described as "very bad", the 30-year-old qualified as second fastest for Saturday's final behind Coleman.
But it was rival Gatlin who eventually stole the show, gatecrashing Bolt's farewell party with a season's personal best. Speaking after the race, Bolt once again pointed blame at his weak start out of the blocks.

"The start, it's killing me," he said. "Normally, I would get it through the rounds and get better through the rounds, but it didn't come together, and that's what killed me.

"I knew if it didn't come together (I would struggle), but I felt that it was there so the fact I didn't get it, that's the reason I lost, but it's one of those things.

"It was rough. Up and down and a little bit stressed but I came out here, and take it as any other championship, and that's why I came out here and did my best. You can't complain about what you get. For me I just did my best."

Prior to Saturday's final, the Jamaican had fiercely criticised the blocks following Friday night's heats but his complaint was dismissed by the IAAF which insisted the blocks are the same model as used in Beijing two years ago.

After recovering in the second half of the race, the 30-year-old closed the gap on his rivals but it wasn't to be enough this time as Gatlin edged out victory by 0.03 seconds.

The London Stadium was left momentarily silenced by the result before proceeding to chant Bolt's name as the American dropped to his knees in tears.

Despite falling short in his final global individual race, Bolt continued to play his part as the golden boy of modern athletics and ran a lap of honour to the stadium's adoring fans.

Gatlin dismissed the crowds' hostile reception but paid tribute to Bolt in the aftermath of his victory.
"The crowd, I tuned out through the rounds," he said. "I stayed the course, I kept my energy through the semi and did what I had to do.

"It's Usain Bolt's last race. To be able to run against him through the years is just amazing.
"We're rivals on the track but in the warm-up area we're joking and the first thing he said to me was, 'Congratulations'. He said, 'You don't deserve all these boos'. I thank him for inspiring me throughout my career and he's an amazing man."

Bolt's attention now turns to Saturday’s relay race as he looks to bow out with one final gold medal to round off what has been a glorious career on athletics' centre stage.

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