Rio Olympics

Usain Bolt Just Cemented His Place As The Greatest Sprinter Of All Time

"It was brilliant. I didn’t go so fast but I’m so happy I won. I told you guys I was going to do it."

by Jed Smith
15 August 2016, 8:40am

Photo by Jack Gruber-USA TODAY Sports

Usain Bolt made history on Sunday with his third Olympic gold medal in the men's 100 metre sprint at the Rio Olympics. In doing so, he cemented his status as the greatest sprinter of all time, and the only man or woman to win the 100 meters at three consecutive Olympics.

Bolt finished in 9.81 seconds, 0.23 seconds outside the world record of 9.58, which he owns. He beat second-placed American and 2004 Olympic champion Justin Gatlin (9.89 seconds) who competed in Rio in controversial circumstances after completing a four year doping suspension in 2010 and was booed in the stadium on Sunday. Third was Canadian Andre de Grasse (9.91 seconds).

Bolt never looked anything but a gold medallist throughout the heats and finals of the 100m. His biggest hiccup came in the semi-finals, where a false start from Bahrain sprinter, Andrew Fisher, disrupted the race. That saw a cautious Bolt break slowly from the blocks. Fisher later blamed a hovering helicopter for the distraction.

Bolt quickly found full flight, however, and reeled in the field for an easy victory. He was all smiles in the lead up to the final, preserving the calm and frivolous demeanour that has been the mainstay of what is now unquestionably the greatest sprinting career in history. After nailing the start, there was never a question.

"It was brilliant," Bolt said. "I didn't go so fast but I'm so happy I won. I told you guys I was going to do it."