If anyone had any doubts as to who the fastest man on the planet was, their questions were emphatically answered back in August in the heat of the rising Eastern sun amidst the glee of tens of thousands who helped a ‘little known native’ from ‘the land of wood and water’ bask in the glory of ultimate sprinting excellence. Usain Bolt was crowned ‘king of the sprints’ and with that, his popularity soared beyond all proportions. Favourable references to ‘superman’ immediately rang out around the world as Bolt totally devoured and destroyed the sprint records …!! The history books were sorely dented on three occasions as the world witnessed something absolutely breathtaking. Will life be the same for the man who conquered all..?? I don’t think so… what with his magnetic charisma, flamboyant persona, crazy dance moves and all, ‘LightningBolt’, the name currently on everyone’s lips, is taking it to the world…!!
Born in Trelawny, Jamaica on 21 August 1986, Usain grew up with his parents, Jennifer and Wellesley Bolt, his brother Sadiki and sister, Christine. He spent his time playing cricket and football with his brother but, none of those sports could contain him. As we all know, he holds the Olympic and world records for the 100m (9.69s), the 200m (19.30s) and, along with his team mates (Powell, Frater and Carter), the 4x100m relay at 37.10s, all set at this year’s event in Beijing. Bolt became the first man in history to set world records in all three at a single Olympics. And, for those of you who were under the false impression that our man ‘appeared from nowhere’, those in the know will tell you that Bolt had previously collected the 200m gold medal at the 2002 World Junior Championships making him the youngest ever gold medallist…. we call that progression. But don’t for one minute think that’s where it will stop for the man with the golden spikes… we predict (as most of you do) that he will clean up and lower all his records in the 2009 season…. Yep, exciting times lies ahead.... The story continues...
Usain ‘Lightening’ Bolt was crowned ‘king of the sprints’ in Beijing and on Sunday 23 November (as the world expected), the triple Olympic champion was crowned ‘Male World Athlete of the Year’. This adds to his ever-increasing collection of Sporting accolades after capturing the world’s imagination with his magnetic persona and crazy dance moves. The 22-year-old Trelawney, Jamaica resident who, raced to Beijing glory in the 100m, the 200m and the 4x100m relay, was obviously gonna run away with the coveted IAAF award just as he'd run away from his rivals in all three finals in the Bird’s Nest Stadium.
So, just when you thought the scribes had written all they could about Bolt’s phenomenal exploits during the summer, his joyous welcome home party in Jamaica and his numerous global ‘Talk Show’ / Celebrity appearances, ‘Lightening Bolt’ strikes again to keep the pens scribbling, the cameras flashing and the tongues wagging. Just what Athletics needed…. a superhero to keep interests alive and inject some of the excitement that had been lost through recent scandalous headlines. Just like in 2006 when compatriot and previous record holder, Asafa Powell was crowned ‘Male World Athlete of the Year’, Bolt has his work cut out for the 2009 season and beyond…. As you dun know, everyone is gonna be gunning for him in trying to knock him off his pedestal…. and that challenge certainly won’t be restricted to just athletes…!! But right now, let’s just ‘big up’ the big man of athletics who, I’m sure, will have the sporting world captivated for a good while yet…
Bolt Bags BBC Sports Personality 2008 & 2009 (Overseas) Award
Is there any stopping the ‘sprint king’ from dominating the headlines..?? I don’t think so…! No sooner had the ‘Athletics Boy Wonder’ copped the coveted International Amateur Athletics Federation (IAAF) ‘Male World Athlete of the Year’ crown, just a couple of weeks later, he went on to claim the Caribbean (CAC) and Jamaican (JAAF) equivalent awards as being the man who simply excelled at his sport in 2008. But he wasn’t quite done and, come Sunday 14 December, the ‘Lightening Bolt’ struck yet again with our man picking up the BBC’s Sports Personality (Overseas) gong (twice).
Not content with sweeping the boards on the Beijing athletics track, Usain Bolt’s domination extended to the prestigious awards ceremonies around the world where he’s all but cleaned up and it seems likely that he’ll continue to stack his trophy cabinet way into 2009 for his exploits in 2008. “It's been a long season and I’ve worked hard. It feels good to be given this award and it means a lot to me”, said a jubilant Bolt via video as strutted his stuff, ‘archer pose’ and all. He wasn’t able to attend the ceremony in person…. I guess he’s somewhere working on his game for next season as word has it that he plans to keep Asafa Powell and all others at bay when it comes to the athletic rings…!! He concluded, “I’ll definitely try to work even harder to get it next year, I’ll be continuing to try and do my best”.
And, although we all expected him to walk (I mean sprint…) away with the IAAF, CAC and JAAF Sports Personality honours, I must admit that I was a little surprised that Bolt managed to bag the BBC’s Overseas prize as well. What with American swimmer Michael Phelps being so prominent in the Beijing pool; tennis supremo Rafael Nadal doing so well to end the year as the number one player and Tiger Woods up to his usual winning ways, it must have been a close call. Still, it’s all good because Bolt deserved all he got…. and, he has no doubt, done the Sports world, athletic fans not to mention Jamaicans proud.
Gwaan Bolt… tek it to dem and to di world…!!