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Bolt breaks 200 mark sooner than Johnson expected

Michael Johnson thought Usain Bolt would one day take his world record in the 200 meters.
He just didn't expect it would be so soon.
The Jamaican sensation broke Johnson's 12-year-old mark, finishing in 19.30 seconds in the Olympic final Wednesday night.
Hours before Bolt was to run, Johnson said at a news conference that he didn't think the record would tumble at the Bird's Nest.
But he hedge that a bit _ and a good thing he did.
"Nothing he does shocks me at this point," said Johnson, who ran his record time of 19.32 at the 1996 Olympics.
Johnson said he just went "wow" when he watched the race, as Bolt gave maximum effort, unlike his record-setting performance in the 100 when he coasted home at the end.
"He wanted that record," Johnson told the BBC. "That lean was not based on trying to beat anyone else, because the other guys are not even anywhere close."
Johnson said before the race that the main thing stopping Bolt from breaking his mark was Bolt's speed around the curve. He thought Bolt, who turned 22 on Thursday, still has work to do there.
So much for that analysis.
"This guy is fast," said Shawn Crawford, the American who wound up with the silver after Wallace Spearmon and Churandy Martina were disqualified for stepping outside of their lanes. "I didn't expect him to be that fast on the turn."
Johnson predicted the 100 title would belong to Bolt before the games began, and said he expected a sensational time.
Still, even he was impressed with Bolt's electrifying performance, making that race look easy as he slowed down near the finish line and shifted to celebration mode.
"It was the most impressive athletic performance I've ever seen in my life," Johnson said before the 200 _ remarks he may now have to reconsider. "I thought he was going to run 9.69, but I didn't think he'd been able to run 9.62, which I think he could've done if he ran through the finish line _ and tied up his shoe."
Photos showed Bolt's left shoelace was undone.
In Johnson's opinion, Bolt is a new breed of sprinter.
"Typically in the past, if an athlete was 6 feet, 5 inches and walked in the coach's office, the coach would say, 'You're a 400-meter runner,'" Johnson said. "He's been able to take the long stride he has and been able to coordinate that and achieve a very long stride. That combination is deadly, as the people in (the 100) race found out."


Updated : 2020-12-01 01:48 GMT+08:00