BRUSSELS, Belgium, CMC – Jamaican sprint icon Usain Bolt finds himself in an unfamiliar position at the season-ending Diamond League meet here today, still trying to post the world’s fastest time over 100 metres.
The 25-year-old has not been at his best this season, with a time of 9.85 seconds earlier this week in Zurich being his fastest.
In that regard, he has played second fiddle to fellow Jamaican Asafa Powell whose 9.78 seconds at the Diamond League Athletissima in Lausanne in June remains the world-leading time. A tired Bolt said yesterday, however, that he still believed he could pull one of his trademark quick times out of the bag for Friday’s Belgacom Memorial Van Damme meeting.
“I’m really looking forward to this,” the World record holder told reporters.
“I really want this world year best and I feel good. I think I have it in me to run the fastest time of the year.”
Bolt will perhaps feel the need to push for the feat especially after his 100m nightmare at the World Championships in Daegu where he failed to defend his title after false starting in the event. However, his field is unlikely to give him much competition, with only four runners having gone under 10 seconds this season.
Jamaican Nesta Carter (9.90) and Americans Justin Gatlin (9.95) and Travis Padgett (9.99) will provide most of the challenge for Bolt, who said he would be looking to improve on Tuesday’s outing in Zurich.
“I am not entirely happy about that race. I did not feel good at the start, and for a few seconds lost my focus too,” Bolt said.
Yohan Blake, the reigning 100 metres world champion, will seek to extend Jamaica’s dominance in the 200 metres when he faces a nine-man field.
He will lock horns with the impressive American Walter Dix who has already run 19.70 seconds this season, and fellow Jamaican Nickel Ashmeade who is one of three in the race who have gone under 20 seconds this year.