World’s fastest man narrowly misses world best with swift 14.42 to win 150m on temporary track at Brazil’s Copacabana Beach
When Usain Bolt ran the world best for 150m in the Great City Games in Manchester in 2009, his 14.35 was described as probably the fastest piece of running the world has ever seen. Why? Because 100m is arguably too short to get into top speed, while 200m track races see athletes slowed down by a bend and they then tire toward the finish.
The distance of 150m, however, is the optimum distance when it comes to an athlete’s ability to hit top speed, especially when run on a straight track.
So when Bolt clocked 14.42 for 150m in Rio de Janeiro on Sunday on a similar temporary, straight track, we discovered the Jamaican is in pretty good form going into the 2013 season. In horse racing parlance, he has wintered well.
Always in control, he pulled ahead in trademark style in the final 50 metres to win comprehensively. Then he delighted a large crowd on the famous beach by doing his lightning pose and throwing his spikes into the crowd.
After racing in much warmer conditions that those he faced when he set the world best in Manchester four years ago, Bolt said: “It’s a good start, my first sprint race of the season, and I just hope to stay injury free.
“I’m also looking forward to come back (to Rio) in 2016. But not midday hopefully to run!”
In an event billed as the “mano a mano” race, Bolt beat Antigua’s Daniel Bailey (14.88), Bruno de Barros of Brazil (14.91) and Ecuador’s Alex Quinonez (15.90) and it concluded a good weekend for the Olympic champion and world record-holder where, among other things, he had got involved in some exhibition soccer tricks.
» Elsewhere on Sunday, Daniel Doherty won the UK 100km title at the Anglo Celtic Plate ultra distance race in Perth, Scotland.