Rocket man Bolt needs afterburners to get home
Jamaican star recovers from slow start to win in London
Usain Bolt of Jamaica reacts after winning the men’s 100m during the London Diamond League ‘Anniversary Games’ meeting at the Olympic Stadium in east London. Photograph: Andrew Winning/Reuters
Rocket man Usain Bolt recovered from an awful start to light up the Olympic Stadium once again on Friday night as won the 100 metres in 9.85 seconds.
The Jamaican returned to the scene of his triple London 2012 triumph, but was made to sweat before blasting through to take the victory.
The 26-year-old entered the arena atop a missile for his customary lap of honour before the action, but this run hardly fired out a major statement of intent ahead of next month’s World Championships.
It was still his fastest time of the year, though, and in the end he was a comfortable winner, with Mike Rodgers second in 9.98secs.
Britain’s newest sprint star James Dasaolu was unable to test himself against the world’s fastest man. Dasaolu, who ran 9.91 seconds in Birmingham earlier this month, had to withdraw as a precaution after feeling a tight hip flexor in the warm-up.
Flashbulbs galore and a roar to rival those heard at the Olympics greeted Bolt when he was introduced to the crowd ahead of the race.
His time was an improvement on his previous best this year of 9.94 and lifted him up to second in the rankings behind Tyson Gay, who is under a doping cloud, but it was still relatively sluggish by his stratospheric standards.
Not that that bothered the capacity 60,000 crowd in east London as they relived London 2012 one year on for the first of the three-day Anniversary Games.
The Jamaican was back at the venue where he became a self-proclaimed “legend” by defending his 100, 200 and 4x100m titles and lapped up the acclaim.