Usain Bolt became one of the most celebrated sportsman after his record breaking runs in the Olympic Games of 2008, where he won three gold medals and set records at 100m and 200m.
Usain was born on 21 August 1986 in Sherwood Content, a small town in Trelawny, Jamaica. As a youngster he was mostly interested in sports, spending time playing football, cricket and basketball. At one time he considered a career as a cricketer, but, his natural talent for sprinting shone through and so he was encouraged to take the path of sprinting. At 15 years old, Usain already towered over his fellow competitors. Growing to a height of 6 foot 5 inches, Usain showed a sprinted need not be short and powerful like previous sprinting greats. In 2002, he won Gold in the World Junior Championships in the 200 metres.
At this stage in his career, Usain appeared to give the impression of being quite laid back. He didn’t lead an austere disciplined life, but, enjoyed dancing and the nightlife of Kingston, Jamaica. However, he was still training hard and won Gold at the World Youth Championship in the next year at 2003.
In 2004, Bolt turned professional, under the guidance of new coach Fitz Coleman. He began his career with the CARIFTA Games in Bermuda. He became the first junior sprinter to break 20 seconds for the 200 metres. By 2005, Usain had a new coach Glen Mills who encouraged Usain to take a more professional approach and not just rely on his natural talent. Over the next few years, injury setbacks curtailed his career, but, he was still able to climb up the rankings. His big breakthrough came in the 2007 World Championships where he gained silver in the 200m and 4*100 metre relay.
Bolt established a new 100 m world record on 31 May 2008. Pushed on by a tail wind of 1.7 m/s, Bolt ran 9.72 s at the Reebok Grand Prix held in the Icahn Stadium in New York City, breaking Powell’s record.
Usain went into his first Olympic Games as one of the favourites, despite his youth and inexperience at major championships.
Usain Bolt proved to be the revelation of the games. Easing through to the finals of both the 100m and 200m, he set the games alight with his electrifying display in both finals.
In the 100 metres final, Usain powered ahead so quickly in the first 60m, he was able to ease off and celebrate in the last few metres. His dominance, audacity and youthful enthusiasm captivated the global audience. In some quarters he was criticised for celebrating before end of line. But, Usain’s dominance and speed were unquestioned. His time of 9.69 was a world record, and if he had kept going to the end, he could have perhaps gone under 9.60
In the 200 metres, Usain again won gold and even more surprisingly broke Michael Johnson’s long standing world record.
By the next World Championships in Berlin 2009, Usain was able to again dominate all the sprint events winning a clean sweep at the 100m, 200m and 100m relay. Again he set remarkable World Record times, lowering the time for 100 metres to 9.58 and 19.19 for 200 metres
On the last day of the Berlin Championships, the governing Mayor of Berlin, Klaus Wowereit, presented Bolt with a 12-foot high section of the Berlin Wall in a small ceremony, saying Bolt had shown that “one can tear down walls that had been considered as insurmountable.”
Bolt won three gold medals, despite being beaten by training partner, Yohan Blake during pre-events at the Jamaican national championships. Bolt won 100m and 200m and set new world record in mens 100 relay.
2013 World Championships
At the 2013 world championships, Bolt again won a unique triple of gold at 100m, 200m and 100m relay. Bolt has announced that he will retire from athletics after the 2016 Olympics.
Usain Bolt and drugs
Usain Bolt has shown tremendous talent ever since he first started running. His timings are consistent with an athlete of tremendous talent. As Bolt himself says:
“I was the youngest person to win the world juniors at 15. I ran the world junior  record 19.93 at  … I have broken every record there is to break, in every event I have ever done.
“For me, I have proven myself since I was 15. … I have shown everything throughout the years since I was always going to be great.”
Usain Bolt is regularly tested by the IAAF international testing pool and has never tested positive. However, inevitably given the history of the sport, questions have been raised about the issue of drug use.
The biggest cause for concern has been from the perceived inadequacies of the Jamaican athletic Federation. In 2013, it emerged that they had failed to undertake proper out of competition testing in the run up to the 2012 London Olympics. This failure to implement proper drug testing was compounded by six Jamaican athletes – including the former world 100m record holder Asafa Powell and Veronica Campbell-Brown, testing positive for banned substances. WADA announced an extraordinary audit into the Jamaican testing programme, and have even threatened to ban Jamaican athletes from international competition. (link)
Bolt has frequently stated that he is clean
“I was made to inspire people and to run, and I was given the gift and that’s what I do,” the six-time Olympic champion said. “I am confident in myself and my team, the people I work with. And I know I am clean.
“So I’m just going to continue running, using my talent and just trying to improve the sport.”
Usain Bolt World Record Video
Bolt wins in 9.58 to beat his own record
100m: 09.58 s (WR, Berlin 2009)
150m: 14.35 s (WB, Manchester 2009)
200m: 19.19 s (WR, Berlin 2009)
400m: 45.28 s (Kingston 2007)
- Gold – 100 m
- Gold – 200 m
- Gold – 4×100 m relay
- Gold – 100 m
- Gold – 200 m
- Gold – 4×100 m relay
- 2013 Gold – 100 m
- 2013 Gold – 200 m
- 2011 Gold – Daegu 4×100 m relay
- 2011 Gold – Daegu 200 m
- 2009 Gold – Berlin 100 m
- 2009 Gold – Berlin 200 m
- 2009 Gold – Berlin 4×100 m relay
- 2007 Silver – Osaka 200 m
- 2007 Silver – Osaka 4×100 m relay
Usain Bolt – The Fastest Man Alive at Amazon.com