Usain Bolt did it again. Of course he did. There was no world record, because the damp, cool, Olympic Stadium track took that out of the equation.
But in his last individual Olympic race Bolt grabbed his eighth gold medal and his third in a row in his beloved 200 meters. More than anything, he did it in his own inimitable style.
There was the laughter, the showmanship, the exhilarated, joyous, infectious celebrations. And there was the raw speed, the kind of natural yet finely honed pace that no one has matched.
The Jamaican sprint king blitzed the field with a lightning start, a seamless turn and a powerful finish to come home in 19.78 seconds, beating out Andre De Grasse (20.02) of Canada and surprise bronze medalist Christophe Lemaitre (20.12) of France.
“I wasn’t happy with the time when I crossed the line, but I’m excited I got the medal, that’s the key thing,” Bolt said. “The fact that I came here and I executed what I wanted is a brilliant feeling.”
In reality, the result was beyond doubt once the first 50 meters had been swallowed up by Bolt’s giant strides. Perfect preparation led to a comfortable triumph. Businesslike is the last word you should ever use to describe him, he is far too interesting for that. But there is a routine that he knows and loves and is accustomed to. Why change it, when it has brought so much success.
Around 40 minutes before liftoff he was out on the warm-up track, about the only time he is ever poker faced, practicing his turns under the guiding eye of trainer Glen Mills.
Then, in the tunnel, the jocular Bolt returning, laughing, gently teasing, and wishing his rivals good luck. In reality, luck had nothing to do with it.
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SOURCE: USA Today, Martin Rogers