Usain Bolt: 'I've lost all respect for Carl Lewis'

 

Usain Bolt has hit out at people who make claims about the use of performance-enhancing drugs in athletics, and has "lost all respect" for former Olympic champion Carl Lewis.

On the day Bolt created history by winning the 200 metres to complete the sprint double for the second Games in succession, Victor Conte - the convicted owner of the Bay Area Laboratory Co-operative (BALCO) that supplied drugs to the likes of Dwain Chambers and Marion Jones - had claimed it was easy for cheats to prosper at London 2012 and that 60% of athletes are using drugs.

And while Bolt reacted angrily to Conte's claims when they were put directly to him, it was unclear exactly what sparked the Jamaican's diatribe against Lewis.

Lewis has previously questioned the stringency of Jamaica's drug-testing programme, but such comments were initially made in September 2008 - shortly after Bolt won three gold medals and set three world records at the Beijing Olympics.

"It is really annoying when people on the sideline talk stupid stuff," Bolt said in the mixed zone when asked about Conte's claims. "I think a lot of these guys who sit and talk, especially Lewis, no-one really remembers who he is, so he is just looking for attention. That is my opinion.

"It is really annoying to know that people are trying to taint the sport. The sport has been going forward. For someone to say that without any proof is really annoying. We work hard. We push ourselves to the limits."

Later, speaking at the official press conference for 200m medallists, Bolt added: "I am going to say something controversial right now; Carl Lewis, I have no respect for him. The things he says about the track athletes is really downgrading, for another athlete to be saying something like that about other athletes.

"I think he's just looking for attention really because nobody really talks much about him so he's just looking for attention. So that was really sad for me when I heard the other day what he was saying.

"For me it was upsetting. I have lost all respect for him. It was all about drugs, talking about drugs, a lot of drug stuff. For an athlete out of the sport to be saying that is really upsetting for me. That was really upsetting for him just to jump up and say something like that. As far as I'm concerned he's looking for attention - that's all."

Asked separately if he could assure people that Jamaican athletes were drug-free, Bolt added: "Without a doubt. We train hard, especially my team-mates. We see each other work every day.

"We work hard, we get injuries, we have to take ice baths, we lay on the track, so I see the work we put in to be the best that we are. When people doubt us it's really hard, but we're trying our best to show the world that we are running clean."

PA

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

How could three tourists have been battered within an inch of their lives by a burglar in a plush London hotel?

A crime that reveals London's dark heart

How could three tourists have been battered within an inch of their lives by a burglar in a plush London hotel?
Meet 'Porridge' and 'Vampire': Chinese state TV is offering advice for citizens picking a Western moniker

Lost in translation: Western monikers

Chinese state TV is offering advice for citizens picking a Western moniker. Simon Usborne, who met a 'Porridge' and a 'Vampire' while in China, can see the problem
Handy hacks that make life easier: New book reveals how to rid your inbox of spam, protect your passwords and amplify your iPhone

Handy hacks that make life easier

New book reveals how to rid your email inbox of spam, protect your passwords and amplify your iPhone with a loo-roll
KidZania lets children try their hands at being a firefighter, doctor or factory worker for the day

KidZania: It's a small world

The new 'educational entertainment experience' in London's Shepherd's Bush will allow children to try out the jobs that are usually undertaken by adults, including firefighter, doctor or factory worker
Renée Zellweger's real crime has been to age in an industry that prizes women's youth over humanity

'Renée Zellweger's real crime was to age'

The actress's altered appearance raised eyebrows at Elle's Women in Hollywood awards on Monday
From Cinderella to The Jungle Book, Disney plans live-action remakes of animated classics

Disney plans live-action remakes of animated classics

From Cinderella to The Jungle Book, Patrick Grafton-Green wonders if they can ever recapture the old magic
Thousands of teenagers to visit battlefields of the First World War in new Government scheme

Pupils to visit First World War battlefields

A new Government scheme aims to bring the the horrors of the conflict to life over the next five years
The 10 best smartphone accessories

Make the most of your mobile: 10 best smartphone accessories

Try these add-ons for everything from secret charging to making sure you never lose your keys again
Mario Balotelli substituted at half-time against Real Madrid: Was this shirt swapping the real reason?

Liverpool v Real Madrid

Mario Balotelli substituted at half-time. Was shirt swapping the real reason?
West Indies tour of India: Hurricane set to sweep Windies into the shadows

Hurricane set to sweep Windies into the shadows

Decision to pull out of India tour leaves the WICB fighting for its existence with an off-field storm building
Indiana serial killer? Man arrested for murdering teenage prostitute confesses to six other murders - and police fear there could be many more

A new American serial killer?

Police fear man arrested for murder of teen prostitute could be responsible for killing spree dating back 20 years
Sweetie, the fake 10-year-old girl designed to catch online predators, claims her first scalp

Sting to trap paedophiles may not carry weight in UK courts

Computer image of ‘Sweetie’ represented entrapment, experts say
Fukushima nuclear crisis: Evacuees still stuck in cramped emergency housing three years on - and may never return home

Return to Fukushima – a land they will never call home again

Evacuees still stuck in cramped emergency housing three years on from nuclear disaster
Wildlife Photographer of the Year: Intimate image of resting lions claims top prize

Wildlife Photographer of the Year

Intimate image of resting lions claims top prize
Online petitions: Sign here to change the world

Want to change the world? Just sign here

The proliferation of online petitions allows us to register our protests at the touch of a button. But do they change anything?