Usain Bolt and Elaine Thompson lead Jamaican squad, while a 132-strong American team has been named for the IAAF World Championships
Going sub-19 seconds for 200m is a possibility, says BoltAugust 25, 2014
Five years on from setting his 100m and 200m world records, Usain Bolt says breaking 19 seconds for the half-lap event remains a goal
On August 16, 2009, Usain Bolt broke the world 100m record in Berlin and four days later he did the same over double the distance.
Five years on, the six-time Olympic gold medallist says breaking 19 seconds for 200m remains a goal and is an achievement that he believes is a “possibility”.
Having struggled with injury in 2014, Bolt has ended his season early and is targeting a return to training in October ahead of a year which includes the IAAF World Championships, an event at which the 28-year-old has won eight gold medals.
Your 100m record has now stood for five years. Why do you think it has remained for so long?
Usain Bolt: I don’t know really. For me, I’ve struggled with injuries over the past five years, so it’s been hard to be in the condition that I was in Berlin to really challenge that record. In London I felt good and I wasn’t far away but everything has to be in your favour – your condition, the weather, the track – and then if you execute your race perfectly from the start through the transition and then driving to the line, then you have a chance.
Thinking back to that 100m final in Berlin, what do you remember of the night?
UB: I remember the night well, the atmosphere in the stadium, walking out there and hearing the people. The crowd was brilliant. I was in really good shape. I felt good and had a confidence that I was going to do it. The track was so quick as well, I liked the blue track. I remember that I started really well that night and ran really hard through the line. It was a great night. I was going there to prove myself to the world again, that I was the best in my discipline.
And the 200m final four days later?
UB: It was a similar experience. I ran conservatively through the heats and so had good energy for the final, which I knew I was going to need. Coming off the bend I knew I was running quickly and I was just focused on pumping my arms well and opening up my legs. I wanted to win, but win well more than run a quick time, but when I saw 19.19 on the clock after I finished I was really happy.
Looking back further still, when did you first believe you could break a world record?
UB: I can’t really remember, because it wasn’t something I thought about. I was always a 200m runner, that was my thing but my coach wanted to me to try the 100m which I did and I liked and learned I was quick. But world records were never something I thought about.
Which of the two records do you think you can most challenge?
UB: I think the 200m. I would love to take that record below the 19 second mark, as that is something I’d be really proud of. That is a goal of mine and the possibility is there. I need to stay injury free for an entire season, from pre-season training all the way through, then I know I can do it.
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