Fact file: Usain Bolt
Born: 21 August 1986
Height: 6’ 5”
Nickname: ‘Lightning’ Bolt
Gold medals in Beijing Olympics: 100m, 200m, 4*100m relay
Best time: 100m in 9.58 seconds
Usain Bolt is the fastest man in the world. He broke three world records in the Beijing Olympics. He surprises many people. He annoys some people. But everyone is asking the same question - can he do even better in the 2012 Olympics?
Usain Bolt was not interested in running when he was young. He loved soccer and cricket. Then his cricket coach noticed Bolt ran fast. He told Bolt to try track events. Bolt began to run and he ran fast. He also ate fast food, played basketball and partied hard. He didn’t train very hard and his coaches weren’t too pleased. He also liked to play jokes. One day he didn’t want to run so he hid. The police looked for him and found him in the back of a van. They weren’t very pleased, either!
Usain Bolt ran faster and faster. He had a lot of injuries and two car crashes, but he got better and he ran again. Then in 2005 Bolt got a new coach. This coach wanted Bolt to be more serious and to train harder. It worked! In the Beijing Olympics Usain Bolt became a superstar. He won three golds and broke three world records - at the same Olympics! He ran so fast that he actually slowed down before the finish in a couple of races. That really annoyed some people.
Usain Bolt is the only man to hold the 100m and 200m World and Olympic titles at the same time. Will he break those records in the next Olympics? He thinks so. He plans to stop joking and be more serious:
‘I won’t be playing around because I want to break those records.’
And the rest of the world wants to watch him break them. The 40,000 tickets for the 100m final sold quicker than any other event - but more than a million people wanted one. As he says:
‘You never know. I may be the one to run 9.4 secs. I’d really like that.’