Bolt fit for Ostrava, eyes 9.8sec record
Usain Bolt on Wednesday said he was fit to run at the Czech Golden Spike event on Friday after a hamstring scare, looking at 9.8 seconds for the 100 metres. The event in the eastern Czech city of Ostrava will be the Jamaican sprint star’s second race this season in the run-up to the Rio Olympics in August, where he will defend his 100m, 200m and 4x100m titles from 2012.
Bolt, who owns the 100m world record at 9.58 seconds and the world 200m record of 19.19, clocked a modest 10.05 seconds on the 100m track in his season debut at the Cayman Invitational Meet last week. Now the 29-year-old six-time Olympic gold medallist wants more. “I’d be very happy with 9.8,” he told reporters in the Czech capital Prague.
After the Caymans race, Bolt had a tight hamstring that forced him to see his doctor in Munich, Germany, but he dismissed all concerns about his fitness ahead of Ostrava. “I’m feeling pretty good, I trained on Tuesday and everything was better,” he said.
Bolt took a break from racing following the Beijing World Championships last August, where he won the 100m and 200m races in addition to helping Jamaica dominate the 4x100m relay. He is seeking an unprecedented third gold medal in a row in all three events in what he has said before will be his final Olympics.
But in Prague he was more cautious about ending his career. “I was always thinking it would be after the world championship next year but my coach keeps saying that I should stop saying that,” Bolt said. “If you could figure out a way to train less and still run fast, I would stay very long. Travelling the world and racing, it’s the same fun, I really enjoy that -- but training, it’s only getting worse.”
He added he still wanted to “go under 9.10” on the 100-metre track and “to run sub-19s” on 200 metres. “I think anything is possible, that’s my motto. I go there every day with that mindset,” said Bolt. “I’m just trying to close it out as best as possible.