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12 Agosto 2017, 11:25 | Gerardo Tarin
Justin Gatlin bows at the feet of Bolt after the American defeated the Jamaican in London
It's nearly like Bolt's retirement has shifted the balance in favor of other sprinters and in a lot of ways, made the sport unpredictable. Regardless of how that goes, he will be forever celebrated for taking Jamaica's sprint hurdling to another level.
Bolt has seven of the fastest 15 times in the 100m of all time. Low temperature is actually good for long distance runners. The stadium looks much the same as it ever did (with just a few smatterings of colour and occasional artefacts showing that it is now the home of West Ham United Football Club). At the 2015 World Championship, the American lost by a hundredth of a second to "lightning" Bolt. In a 100 meter race, which usually lasts a shy under 10 seconds, it's just not fair that he can open up a 5 meter lead over his nearest opponent and start to showboat before he crosses the finish line. Everyone expected a spectacular race.
Gatlin beat Usain Bolt last weekend, and, sure enough, the Prime Minister of Jamaica, Andrew Holness, outraged at Bolt being robbed of a golden swansong, demanded life bans for drug cheats.
Gatlin, who was twice banned from track and field after testing positive for drugs, clocked 9.92 for the gold medal, Coleman took silver at 9.94 seconds, and Bolt, 9.95 for bronze.
The Institute of Theoretical Astrophysics at the University of Oslo did a scientific analysis of that run and estimated that Bolt could have finished with a time of 9.55 seconds if he hadn't slowed down to celebrate. Bolt could outrun every man on this planet but he cannot defeat Father Time.
Whenever the giant screen inside the stadium showed him doing the baton exchange practice with his Jamaican team-mates in preparation for the 4x100m relay race at the warm-up arena, the capacity crowd cheered loudly. Bolt graciously settled for a bronze. "He [Gatlin] is a great competitor".
But I maintain that the only difference between Bolt and Gatlin in this respect is that Bolt was smarter, luckier, or better protected.
The two legends took a photo together which was shared by Bolt on social media on Wednesday, attracting hundreds of likes, shares and comments. Being the poster boy of sprinting clearly has its perks.
After Beijing, Bolt signed deals with Gatorade, Hublot, Virgin, and Visa.
"Let's have a look at the medal table", chortled Gabby Logan, as after one race Team GB/Somalia ruled supreme, but there hasn't been much to raise a titter since. Although it could not be a flawless finish, he finished 3rd in a race that would be remembered for years to come. All in all, his career earnings estimate is at £47 million. The fastest man on earth has made sprinting fun, entertaining and handsome.
Gabby Logan presents live coverage from the penultimate day of the World Championships in London.
However, Gatlin's agent Renaldo Nehemiah, a former 110m hurdles world record holder, was scathing about Coe's remarks. That he's the world champion today is an undeniable testament to his (natural) talent and hard work.
Perhaps more foreboding, though, is that the IOC has already stripped Bolt of one of his nine Olympic gold medals.
His four Olympic gold medals were dedicated to each of his children.
His entire career is a celebration itself. Not only has Bolt created Olympic and athletics records, he has equally redeemed the sport from its numerous doping scandals. It's too bad that, far from being the fun and lovable guy Bolt always was, Lewis was always an arrogant and surly jerk. His post-race celebrations became a trademark.
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