Usain Bolt secures legendary status with 200m victory

 

Usain Bolt tonight secured the legendary status he craved by becoming the first man to win the Olympic sprint double twice in succession on an historic night in London.

While millions would already consider Bolt a legend for winning triple gold in Beijing and defending his 100 metres title here on Sunday, the Jamaican insisted he also had to retain his 200m title to achieve such status.

And the 25-year-old did precisely that with another imperious performance, leading a Jamaican clean sweep ahead of 100m silver medallist Yohan Blake and Warren Weir, both of whom are just 22.

Bolt's winning time of 19.32 seconds was outside his own world record of 19.19s which he felt might be a possibility, but the 80,000 crowd had already witnessed one such feat as Kenya's David Rudisha stormed to 800m gold in 1:40.91, taking 0.10s off his own record.

Bolt had lost to Blake over 100 and 200m at the Jamaican trials - and later underwent treatment on a stiff back which was causing hamstring problems - but gained sweet revenge over both distances in London, even having the time to raise a finger to his lips as he crossed the line tonight.

That was jokingly directed at training partner Blake, who had been talking up his chances in Bolt's favourite event, and the winner said: "This is what I wanted and I got it. We've been working hard all season. We pushed ourselves, we pushed each other and we're happy."

Asked about lowering the world record he set when winning the world title in Berlin in 2009, Bolt added: "I think it was possible...but I guess I wasn't fit enough. I was fast but I wasn't fit enough.

"I came off the corner, I could feel the strain on my back a little bit so I was trying to keep my form, but I stopped running because I knew it wasn't going to be a world record. When I came off the corner I could feel it.

"It was hard. I really dedicated [myself] to my work, I know what London meant to me. I came here and I gave it my all and I'm proud of myself. I didn't get a world record - I really wanted to do it in the 200m - but I'm happy."

Blake, who will team up with Bolt in the 4x100m relay, said: "Usain Bolt has been motivating me all season. Everything has been going good so far."

And the virtually unknown Weir added: "It's a great honour to come here and do what the country wanted, to get the top three."

Wallace Spearmon had to settle for fourth in a season's best of 19.90s, but there was success elsewhere for the United States as Christian Taylor added the Olympic title to his world triple jump crown and Ashton Eaton claimed decathlon gold.

Taylor had been in danger of bowing out of the competition after fouls in the first two rounds, but earned himself three extra jumps with a leap of 17.15m in the third round.

And the 22-year-old made the most of that reprieve by soaring out to 17.81m in the next round to finish 19 centimetres ahead of team-mate Will Claye (17.62m), with Italy's Fabrizio Donato taking bronze with 17.48m.

"I'm so honoured," Taylor said. "It's such a blessing to share this moment with my family. I played this like another meet but the energy that 80,000 people bring is just phenomenal."

Perhaps the biggest surprise of the evening came when there was a false start in the last event of the decathlon, but that did not stop world record holder Eaton from sealing victory.

Eaton took a 151-point lead over compatriot Trey Hardee into the 1,500m and finished ahead of the two-time world champion to end up 198 points clear after two gruelling days of competition.

Eaton's score of 8,869 was 24 short of the Olympic record, with Hardee recording a season's best of 8,671 and Cuba's Leonel Suarez also managing a season's best of 8,523 to claim bronze.

The final gold medal of the evening went to Czech Barbora Spotakova, who successfully defended her javelin title with a throw of 69.55m.

Each of the 31-year-old's first four throws were over 66 metres and would have been good enough for victory, with Germany's Christina Obergfoll taking silver with 65.16m.

Germany's Linda Stahl claimed bronze with a season's best of 64.91m in the fourth round.

PA

Sport
England's women celebrate after their 3rd place play-off win against Germany
Women's World CupFara Williams converts penalty to secure victory and bronze medals
Arts and Entertainment
Ricardo by Edward Sutcliffe, 2014
artPortraits of LA cricketers from notorious suburb go on display
News
newsHillary Clinton comments on viral Humans of New York photo of gay teenager
Arts and Entertainment
The gang rape scene in the Royal Opera’s production of Gioachino Rossini’s Guillaume Tell has caused huge controversy
music
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

The Greek referendum exposes a gaping hole at the heart of the European Union – its distinct lack of any genuine popular legitimacy

Gaping hole at the heart of the European Union

Treatment of Greece has shown up a lack of genuine legitimacy
Number of young homeless in Britain 'more than three times the official figures'

'Everything changed when I went to the hostel'

Number of young homeless people in Britain is 'more than three times the official figures'
Compton Cricket Club

Compton Cricket Club

Portraits of LA cricketers from notorious suburb to be displayed in London
London now the global money-laundering centre for the drug trade, says crime expert

Wlecome to London, drug money-laundering centre for the world

'Mexico is its heart and London is its head'
The Buddhist temple minutes from Centre Court that helps a winner keep on winning

The Buddhist temple minutes from Centre Court

It helps a winner keep on winning
Is this the future of flying: battery-powered planes made of plastic, and without flight decks?

Is this the future of flying?

Battery-powered planes made of plastic, and without flight decks
Isis are barbarians – but the Caliphate is a dream at the heart of all Muslim traditions

Isis are barbarians

but the Caliphate is an ancient Muslim ideal
The Brink's-Mat curse strikes again: three tons of stolen gold that brought only grief

Curse of Brink's Mat strikes again

Death of John 'Goldfinger' Palmer the latest killing related to 1983 heist
Greece debt crisis: 'The ministers talk to us about miracles' – why Greeks are cynical ahead of the bailout referendum

'The ministers talk to us about miracles'

Why Greeks are cynical ahead of the bailout referendum
Call of the wild: How science is learning to decode the way animals communicate

Call of the wild

How science is learning to decode the way animals communicate
Greece debt crisis: What happened to democracy when it’s a case of 'Vote Yes or else'?

'The economic collapse has happened. What is at risk now is democracy...'

If it doesn’t work in Europe, how is it supposed to work in India or the Middle East, asks Robert Fisk
The science of swearing: What lies behind the use of four-letter words?

The science of swearing

What lies behind the use of four-letter words?
The Real Stories of Migrant Britain: Clive fled from Zimbabwe - now it won't have him back

The Real Stories of Migrant Britain

Clive fled from Zimbabwe - now it won’t have him back
Africa on the menu: Three foodie friends want to popularise dishes from the continent

Africa on the menu

Three foodie friends want to popularise dishes from the hot new continent
Donna Karan is stepping down after 30 years - so who will fill the DKNY creator's boots?

Who will fill Donna Karan's boots?

The designer is stepping down as Chief Designer of DKNY after 30 years. Alexander Fury looks back at the career of 'America's Chanel'