Usain Bolt‘s introductory press conference at his first Commonwealth Games was less memorable for his answers than for the questions asked — whether he’s ever worn a kilt, his thoughts on the Israel-Gaza situation and Scottish independence and multiple requests for selfies from the assembled media in Glasgow.
The most important bit of news is that he’s 100 percent recovered from a foot injury that delayed his 2014 debut.
“The injury has completely gone,” Bolt said.
Bolt arrived at the multi-sport event Saturday (to bagpipes!) for his first race(s) of the season, a 4x100m relay heat Friday, and if gold medal favorite Jamaica advances, the final next Saturday.
The six-time Olympic champion and 100m and 200m world-record holder doesn’t usually show up for heats in relays, but he’s doing so in Glasgow because he hasn’t raced since going head to head with a bus Dec. 14.
“I need the runs, really, because these are my first runs for the season,” Bolt said. “I really need to get it going.”
Bolt isn’t contesting individual races in Glasgow because he didn’t compete at the Jamaican trials and didn’t want to take a spot from somebody who did run there. A foot injury first reported in March pushed back his preparations for the season and saw him pull out of scheduled meets.
“I don’t know what running shape I’m in,” Bolt said, before clarifying. “I know I’m in good shape running-wise, but actually competing is always different.”
Those were answers to the most pertinent questions at the press conference. Others were more out of left field.
First, he was asked if he had ever worn a kilt.
“No, I haven’t,” Bolt said. “I was told I was going to get one. So, we’ll see how that works out.”
He was then offered a kilt by somebody nearby.
“Red is not my color,” Bolt said.
Bolt will be in Glasgow for a week and, though he said he expects to spend a lot of time in his athletes village room, hopes to see the Jamaican women’s netball team.
He’s not scheduled for any individual races this season until Aug. 14 on Copacabana Beach in Rio de Janeiro.