Athletics

Bolt: I'm only human

2011-06-10 09:05
Usain Bolt (AP)

Oslo - Usain Bolt cruised to his 14th successive 200m victory at the Bislett Games but then warned critics of his early-season form that he was "only human".

Bolt has failed to hit the highs he set when first exploding to triple Olympic gold at the Beijing Games, all in world record times, and then also securing a golden treble at the Berlin worlds a year later, re-setting the 100m and 200m world records in the process.

Last season was pretty much a write-off, with the 24-year-old athlete sitting out six weeks in full summer with an achilles tendon problem that saw him cede his 100m number one ranking to American arch-rival Tyson Gay.

The lanky Jamaican, who dominated the field on Thursday to win in 19.86 seconds, is now back on the circuit but insisting that he needed time to properly get back into race mode from his injury.

"It's always good to finish a race because it shows I'm in good shape. And I finished injury-free, that's key," Bolt said after his Oslo victory.

"It's not the old Usain Bolt but I'm getting there. That's a good look for me and I'm very happy."

He added: "People expect too much from me. Yes, I set a high standard for myself, but I'm only human. So I got injured and am taking my time working my way back up. You take steps, you never just jump. I'm feeling good and I'm getting there."

Bolt denied that he was feeling under pressure in the build-up to the August 27-September 4 World Athletics Championships in Daegu, South Korea.

"There's never pressure for me. It's two-and-a-half months to go. I have nothing to worry about. My coach (Glen Mills) is not worried so I'm not worried.

"I know what I need to do: go home, execute and try as much as possible to stay injury-free. Get injured now and I'm back to square one.

"So the focus is on staying injury-free and getting the ticket to the top."

Given his training mates, Bolt has no shortage of race-like conditions to perfect his sprinting abilities.

"I train with some great athletes: (Antigua's) Daniel Bailey, Yohan Blake, Mario Forsythe (both Jamaica). These guys are top athletes so I can work on techniques easily in training," he said.

Bolt also played down Gay's decision to concentrate on the 100m to the detriment of the 200m, saying he never focused on one rival athlete.

"Tyson is thinking about his injury," Bolt said. "I think he has a really bad back problem and I'm figuring that's why he hasn't run the 200m all season.

"But for me it's never about one person. I take everyone seriously. When you start focusing on one person, someone can sneak up on you. I'm focused on everybody: as long as they're in a lane next to me, I focus."

Bolt said he had three more races planned before the Daegu worlds, but intimated that that could change depending on how his training pans out.

"My coach will watch me in training and will determine if I need to do more (races) in the month to come."

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