Alexa

Bolt sets world record in Olympic 200

Bolt sets world record in Olympic 200

A sprint double was all too predictable. To make the Olympics absolutely special, Usain Bolt added a world record double Wednesday by winning the gold medal in the 200 meters.
Already well ahead coming off a tight bend that was supposed to be his only challenge, the Jamaican didn't coast for the first time in the games and bettered the world record of Michael Johnson _ one that even the track great considered still out of reach.
With his time of 19.30 seconds, he sliced .02 off the mark dating to the 1996 Atlanta Games. And, incredibly, he cut his personal best by a massive .37.
"I'm shocked. I am still shocked," Bolt said. "I have been aspiring to the world record for so long."
On the eve of his 22nd birthday, one full of historic hyperbole, Bolt won by the biggest margin since the 200 came on the Olympic scene 108 years ago. In a sport dominated by hundreds of seconds, he beat the field by two-thirds of a second.
"Everything came together tonight and I just blew my mind and blew the world's mind," he said.
All too far behind him, defending champion Shawn Crawford went from fourth to taking silver in 19.96 after both Churandy Martina of the Netherlands Antilles, the original runner-up, and Wallace Spearmon were disqualified for running out their lane. A second American, Walter Dix, got bronze.
Never letting up, Bolt dipped at the finish line and once he saw the record was gone, he fell to the track, his giant legs and arms pointing every which way.
"He is Superman 2," Johnson said on the BBC said after he saw his record fall.
No way, said Bolt.
"I'm Lightning Bolt. I'm not Flash Gordon or anybody," he said. "My name is Lightning Bolt."
If swimming had Michael Phelps, track has Usain Bolt and the games are so much the better for it.
And on another sultry evening where nothing seems to go wrong for the overpowering Jamaicans, Melaine Walker beat Sheena Tosta of the United States in an Olympic record of 52.64 seconds to win the 400 hurdles.
When the reggae blared again, it was clear it had become the theme song of the Bird's Nest.
"I am glad to know he is from Jamaica and that he is supernatural," Walker said of Bolt.
It left Jamaica atop the gold-medal standings for track and field with four, together with Russia, and one ahead of the United States.
In another final which turned into a one-man show, Bolt was his showboating best again. It turned him into the first man ever to break the world marks in both sprints at an Olympics. Not even Carl Lewis or Jesse Owens could do that.
No one could blame him for the hot-dogging dances after such a performance.
All from a man that was a virtual unknown outside his Caribbean island nation ahead of this season.
He had coasted to a world record of 9.69 in the 100 on Saturday but had promised to keep on running this time, knowing Johnson's record was one of the most exalted in the sport.
But nothing is beyond this dangly carefree Jamaican _ despite an Olympic diet of chicken nuggets.
Less than an hour before his oversized performance, he was fooling and frolicking with his coach in the stadium tunnel, all grins and banter. While others pump themselves up with screams of encouragement, slapping their faces to get the adrenaline going, there is nothing like a joke for Bolt.
Playing to crowd, he was smoothing his closely cropped pate, wiped those imaginary drops of tension from his brow before beating his yellow shirt again, and ready he was.
It was unlike anything seen in the sport.
"He got an incredible start. I just went 'Wow,'" said Johnson, a man known for his calm composure. "It was a much more amazing start than he got in the 100 meters and then his turn was just absolutely fabulous."
Starting in lane 4, he always had a good view of American rivals Walter Dix and Wallace Spearmon in the outside lanes. Crawford was just inside the towering Jamaican. It was all irrelevant.
With the 4x100 relays coming up over the weekend, the Jamaican could become the most successful track athlete of the games.
In the battle for sprint supremacy it was Jamaica 3, United States 0. And the Jamaican women were ready to make it worse on Thursday in the 200.
Defending champion Veronica Campbell-Brown and Kerron Stewart had the fastest times in qualifying for the final, ahead of their U.S. rivals Muna Lee and two-time world champion Allyson Felix.
In the absence of injured hurdler Liu Xiang, China got an unexpected chance to cheer when Zhang Wenxiu won bronze in the hammer throw behind champion Aksana Miankova of Belarus and Yipsi Moreno of Cuba.
Looking for a long-distance double, 10,000 champion Kenenisa Bekele easily advanced into Saturday's final of the 5,000, letting his U.S. rival Bernard Lagat take the third heat.
Surprisingly, Bahrain's Rachid Ramzi, who won the 1,500, passed on his chance for a double and was a nonstarter in the race.
With Liu injured, chief rival Dayron Robles continued his smooth way toward gold, clearing the hurdles with aplomb to qualify in 13.12 seconds. He was joined by U.S. rivals David Oliver and David Payne.
With Bolt the undisputed hero, Lyudmila Blonska could well become track's villain of the games _ if a doping violation is confirmed Thursday.
The International Olympic Committee said Wednesday that the heptathlon silver medalist, who finished second to Ukrainian teammate Nataliia Dobrynska on Saturday, was under investigation.
If confirmed, Blonska would become a repeat offender and kicked out of the sport forever. The 30-year-old Ukrainian served a doping suspension for the steroid Stanozolol between 2003-05.