Usain Bolt runs his slowest 100m final ever; Brazil TV simulates Bolt’s dream 100m race

Usain Bolt

Usain Bolt‘s first 100m race of the season did not sit well with the fastest man of all time.

Bolt won in 10.12 seconds in Rio de Janeiro on Sunday, over U.S. Olympian Ryan Bailey, Netherlands Olympian Churandy Martina and a Brazilian.

“I think it was poor execution overall,” Bolt said, according to Reuters. “I am sure my coach isn’t going to be too happy. The good thing is that I won.”

It’s his slowest recorded 100m time in a finals race. He’s been slower in preliminary heats at major championships, where he could get away with shutting it down early and still advance to the next round.

“My start’s been letting me down, hasn’t been consistent,” Bolt said in a post-race interview. “I just need more runs, and I’ll be OK.”

Bolt was perhaps slowed by faulty starting blocks. Check out the 1:55 mark in this highlight of the race, as one of Bolt’s blocks flew up after he propelled from it.

Bolt, 28, only ran 400 meters total in competition last year, his season starting late due to March foot surgery and ending early as a precaution. In two 100m races last year, his best time was 9.98 seconds. His world record, from 2009, is 9.58.

On April 11, Bolt ran a 200m race in 20.20 seconds in Kingston, Jamaica. That was more in line with his usual early season times for sprints.

Bolt is next expected to race at the IAAF World Relays in Nassau, Bahamas, in May. He could go head-to-head on relay anchor legs with U.S. rival Justin Gatlin, who was the fastest man in the 100m and 200m last year.

Also Sunday, Brazilian TV aired an interview with Bolt (may be geoblocked) where he was asked to pick two sprinters across history he would like to race against. Bolt picked retired 2000 Olympic champion Maurice Greene and, surprisingly, disgraced Canadian sprinter Ben Johnson, who was stripped of a 1988 Olympic 100m gold medal for doping.

The broadcaster then put together a simulation of a potential Bolt-Greene-Johnson race, with Bolt winning in a world record 9.4 seconds.

Usain Bolt’s coach unaffected by Justin Gatlin’s fast times; Bolt to run World Relays

12-year-old skateboarders earn medals at world championships

Chloe Covell

At the world skateboarding championships, 12-year-olds Chloe Covell from Australia and Onodera Ginwoo from Japan earned silver and bronze medals, respectively, in Sunday’s street finals.

In the women’s event, Covell took silver behind Brazilian 15-year-old Rayssa Leal, who was a silver medalist herself at the Tokyo Games.

Frenchman Aurélien Giraud, a 25-year-old who was sixth in skateboarding’s Olympic debut in Tokyo, won the men’s final in the United Arab Emirates. Ginwoo was third behind Portugal’s Gustavo Ribeiro.

The top Americans were Olympic men’s bronze medalist Jagger Eaton in sixth and 15-year-old Paige Heyn in seventh in the women’s event.

Nyjah Huston, a six-time world champion who placed seventh in Tokyo, missed worlds after August surgery for an ACL tear.

Up to three men and three women per nation can qualify per event (street and park) for the 2024 Paris Games. World rankings come June 2024 determine which Americans qualify.

In Tokyo, four of the 12 skateboarding medalists were ages 12 or 13.

Japan’s Kokona Hiraki, then 12, won silver in women’s park to become the youngest Olympic medalist since 1936, according to Japan’s Momiji Nishiya, then 13, won women’s street and became the youngest gold medalist in an individual event since 1936.

Worlds conclude this week with the men’s and women’s park events. The finals are Saturday.

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Francesco Friedrich, most decorated bobsledder in history, rebounds for 12th world title

Francesco Friedrich

A week after his first major championships defeat in seven years, German Francesco Friedrich returned to his winning ways to close the world bobsled championships on Sunday.

Friedrich’s four-man sled won the world title by 69 hundredths of a second over British and Latvian sleds that tied for silver, combining times from four runs over the last two days in St. Moritz, Switzerland. It marked Great Britain’s first world championships men’s bobsled medal since 1966.

Geoff Gadbois drove the lone U.S. sled in the field, finishing 18th.

Friedrich, the most decorated bobsledder in history, extended his records with a fifth consecutive world four-man title and 12th world championship between two- and four-man events.

Germany swept all four titles at bobsled worlds with four different drivers taking gold.

Friedrich had won 12 consecutive Olympic or world titles before taking two-man silver at worlds last week in St. Moritz, Switzerland. He was dethroned in that event by countryman Johannes Lochner.

Friedrich has been hampered recently by a muscle injury from sprint training in late December. Going into worlds, Lochner had won four consecutive World Cup two-man races, while Hall won the last two World Cups in four-man.

Friedrich, 32, said before this season that he plans to make the 2026 Milan-Cortina Winter Games his final competition. Friedrich and push athlete Thorsten Margis can break the record of four career Olympic bobsled gold medals that they currently share with retired Germans Andre Lange and Kevin Kuske.

The World Cup season concludes with stops in Igls, Austria, and Sigulda, Latvia, the next two weekends.

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