They say numbers don’t lie. This statement is absolutely true. In the case of Usain Bolt’s career, people say he is the fastest sprinter of all time. But is he the fastest sprinter of all time?
People might say he talks too much but I say, he does the talking on the field. He just ended his career in Athletics finishing in 3rd place in the 100m behind the American duo of Justin Gatlin and Christian Coleman to end of what I can label as a successful career in the sprint format.
Looking at how he started prior to becoming prominent in the world, he was just a local boy from a small town in Trelawny in Jamaica. All he wanted to do, was to participate in sports. Whether it was football or athletics, he did not care as long it was a sport.
I keep reminiscing – seeing him on Television at the Beijing Olympics in the 100m final when he clocked in 9.69 seconds breaking the record held by former world champion Michael Johnson. He was slowing down in which people still say, he was going to finish even better than 9.69 seconds. I just could not believe what I saw with my own two eyes.
A lot have compared Bolt and Johnson. Johnson is the four-time Olympic and World champion and for Bolt, he is an 11-time Olympic and World Champion. Numbers don’t lie! Even though Johnson still maintains that he was going to beat Bolt during his time but, I beg to differ on this one. Bolt is still the Champion across all three formats (100m, 200m and 4*100 relay men) and he broke all records across all three formats even though he lost his gold medal as his relay team were disqualified because his teammate, Nesta Carter was found guilty of doping.
Bolt is the only sprinter in history to win Olympic 100m and 200m titles at three consecutive Olympics (2008, 2012 and 2016) also known as the triple double. Even Johnson failed to accomplish this. That speaks volumes of what type of character he is.
Bolt is the most successful athlete of the World Championships and was the first athlete to win three titles in both 100m and 200m at the Competition. Losing in the final to Gatlin was certainly not he expected but, he congratulated his counterpart – showing true sportsmanship.
I don’t see anyone emulating him or even breaking his record anytime soon. Although records are meant to be broken, I see it being broken in the next 10-20 years. Although he lost in his final appearance at the World Championship, he will always be regarded as the fastest sprinter we’ve seen.
Author: Takalani Lufhugu