Olympics 2012

'Hands off' 200m: Bolt

2012-08-06 14:17
Usain Bolt (AFP)

London - Usain Bolt raced to a repeat in the Olympic 100m and told compatriot and training partner Yohan "The Beast" Blake to forget about an upset in the 200m.

GALLERY: The speed of Bolt

The 25-year-old Bolt - world record holder in both the 100m and 200m - wants to retain the 200 title he won in Beijing, believing a second Olympic sprint double will seal his status as a Games legend.

Bolt's confidence was shaken by defeats at the hands of 22-year-old Blake, who won the world 100m title last year after Bolt was disqualified for a false start and beat Bolt in both the 100m and 200m at the Jamaican Olympic trials.

Having risen to the occasion at the Olympic Stadium on Sunday, winning the 100m in dominant style over Blake and 2004 champion Justin Gatlin, Bolt said the 200m was his property.

"I've told Yohan Blake that the 200m will be different because that's my pet event," Bolt said.

"I'm not going to let him beat me again. I've said that to him already."

Bolt, who will also look to retain the 4x100m relay and may even compete in the 4x400m relay if he emerges from the 200 in good shape, said that winning the 100 had taken him one step nearer to the tag of legend.

However, only a 200m victory, he said, would cement his claim to "greatest" status.

"I think I have to wait until the 200m and then my fans have got to say 'yes he is' and me has got to say 'yes he is' so I'm never going to say I'm the greatest until after my 200m," said Bolt.

Bolt's win in the 100 leaves Blake searching for consolation in the 200, but Bolt said his younger team-mate had opened a Pandora's Box with his victory at the Jamaican trials.

"Definitely the trials woke me up," Bolt said. "Yohan gave me a wake-up call.

"He knocked on my door and said 'Usain, this is Olympic year, wake up' so I'm happy and I'm grateful for that moment because after that I refocused and I got my head together.

"I got my head in the game so I'm happy."

Blake simply predicted that their battle for gold would be a crowd pleaser.

"We have the 200m coming up. I think it's going to be an interesting one," he said.

Outside the Jamaican rivals, the 200m looked to be a battle for bronze with experienced American Wallace Spearmon seeming a better bet than the third of the Jamaicans Warren Weir.

The 27-year-old American - a three-time world minor medallist over the distance - will also be seeking to make up for the disappointment of being disqualified from third four years ago after stepping into another lane.

"You look back on Beijing - what place is a disqualification?" he said. "It's like I didn't even race. I'm ready to get this going and go on to redemption.

"No more stepping on lines. No sobriety tests. I'm staying in my lane."

Also in the mix is French sprinter Christophe Lemaitre, who will be hoping his decision to skip the 100m pays off in the 200.

Read more on:    olympics 2012  |  usain bolt  |  athletics
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