Sunday, 16 August 2009

Event Report - Men's 100m - Final

Usain Bolt storming towards another World Record of 9.58 seconds in the men's 100m Final with the USA's Tyson Gay in second and Jamaica's Asafa Powell in third  (Getty Images)

Usain Bolt storming towards another World Record of 9.58 seconds in the men's 100m Final with the USA's Tyson Gay in second and Jamaica's Asafa Powell in third (Getty Images)

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    • Jamaica's Usain Bolt celebrates winning the gold medal in the men's 100 Metres with yet another World Record
    With a performance that defies the imagination, Usain Bolt set a new 100m World record of 9.58 on the second evening of the 12th IAAF World Championships in Athletics at the Olympic Stadium in Berlin.

    The 22-year-old Jamaican knocked a mind-numbing 0.11 second from the 9.69 record he set at the Olympic Games in Beijing exactly one year ago today. One can only imagine where he’ll be and how fast he’ll run on 16 August of next year.

    "I was definitely ready for the World record and I did it," Bolt said. "I didn't think I could run a tenth (of a second) faster than my World record, but for me, anything is possible."

    His was the largest chunk ever – by far – to be sliced from the 100m World record. Previously, both he and Maurice Greene shaved 0.05 from the standard to earn the moniker of World’s Fastest Man. A few days ago, Greene suggested that Bolt and other top sprinters weren’t currently on the same planet. Bolt’s performance this evening gave Greene’s assessment an otherworldly ring of truth.

    So profound was Bolt’s achievement that defending champion Tyson Gay clocked a sensational 9.71 in second, a national record, that was just 0.02 shy of the previous World mark. And the American, who is now the second fastest man in history, was nowhere near the Jamaican when the finish line was crossed.

    "I'm disappointed to have lost the race, but i ran my fastest time," Gay said.

    Not the quickest from the blocks, Bolt nonetheless took control some 30 metres into the race and continued onward to forge through territory not even the most passionate observers would have imagined before this evening. It was a run similar to his emphatic victory in Beijing’s Bird’s Nest stadium a year ago, with two distinct differences: this time Bolt ran hard to the line, and this time he'll collect a $100,000 World record bonus.

    But the show’s not over. Both Bolt and Gay will meet again in the 200m, which starts on Tuesday (18 Aug).

    Bolt’s compatriot, the former World record holder Asafa Powell took bronze for the second consecutive championships, in 9.84.

    "I'm so excited about Usain's run tonight, it is great to be part of this," said Powell, who's personal best is 9.72. "Usain showed us that it is possible."

    Further back was the second wave, led by Antiguan Dan Bailey who was fourth in 9.93, just ahead of Olympic silver medallist Richard Thompson of Trinidad who was credited with the same time.

    Dwain Chambers of Great Britain was sixth in 10.00, edging the second Trinidadian in the race, Marc Burns, who also stopped the clock in 10.00.

    * pending the usual ratification procedures

    Bob Ramsak for the IAAF