Usain Bolt: My coach said I could go to 2020 Olympics

Usain Bolt
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Usain Bolt said his coach proposed that he could compete in a fifth Olympics at Tokyo 2020.

Bolt has said for years that Rio 2016 would be his final Olympics and that he might retire in 2016 or after the 2017 World Championships in London.

But he did not rule out Tokyo 2020 in a Jamaican TV interview that aired Sunday.

“We’ll see, because the coach say I can go on to even the next Olympics in 2020,” Bolt said, adding a chuckle and presumably meaning his longtime coach, Glen Mills. “I’m not going to say what I’m going to do, but my coach said I should stop talking about retirement. Let’s just go through those two years and see what happens.

“He said I could, if I wanted to [go to 2020]. I do believe my coach.”

Bolt will turn 34 in August 2020 and be at a similar age to Olympic sprint champions Carl Lewis (35), Michael Johnson (33) and Donovan Bailey (32) at their final Games.

“The older you get, the harder training is going to get,” Bolt said. “So, 32, 33, 34, it’s going to be a lot of work. If I feel I can do it, I will definitely try, but, for me, I want to retire on top of my game. I don’t want to continue when I know I’m not going to push myself hard enough.”

Bolt has long cited a conversation with Johnson, who retired near the top of his game after repeating as Olympic 400m champion at Sydney 2000.

“That’s one question I asked Michael Johnson, why did you retire when you were dominating?” Bolt said. “He said, ‘Listen, I’ve done everything in this sport. I was on top. Why should I continue?’ So you accomplish everything you want to accomplish. At some point, you just say, listen, let me leave the sport.”

Bolt is still hungry. He has stressed he aspires to break his 200m world record of 19.19 seconds.

If Bolt wins three gold medals at a third straight Olympics in August, he will share the record of nine Olympic track and field titles with Paavo Nurmi and Carl Lewis. The lure of 2020 could include the possibility of holding the record by himself.

Bolt also mentioned Michael Jordan in the interview that aired Sunday.

“He left the sport when he was great [with the Chicago Bulls in 1998], and he came back [with the Washington Wizards in 2001],” said Bolt, who met Jordan at last year’s Super Bowl. “Made a small mark off his career, but he’s still the great Michael Jordan. So I don’t want to push myself in that position, to continue in the sport while everybody is stepping up and I’m going backwards.”

Bolt recently sprained his left ankle in preparation for this season, according to L’Equipe.

MORE: Olympic track and field schedule changed

Olympian Derrick Mein ends U.S. men’s trap drought at shotgun worlds

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Tokyo Olympian Derrick Mein became the first U.S. male shooter to win a world title in the trap event since 1966, prevailing at the world shotgun championships in Osijek, Croatia, on Wednesday.

Mein, who grew up on a small farm in Southeast Kansas, hunting deer and quail, nearly squandered a place in the final when he missed his last three shots in the semifinal round after hitting his first 22. He rallied in a sudden-death shoot-off for the last spot in the final by hitting all five of his targets.

He hit 33 of 34 targets in the final to win by two over Brit Nathan Hales with one round to spare.

The last U.S. man to win an Olympic trap title was Donald Haldeman in 1976.

Mein, 37, was 24th in his Olympic debut in Tokyo (and placed 13th with Kayle Browning in the mixed-gender team event).

The U.S. swept the Tokyo golds in the other shotgun event — skeet — with Vincent Hancock and Amber English. Browning took silver in women’s trap.

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Mo Farah withdraws before London Marathon

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British track legend Mo Farah withdrew before Sunday’s London Marathon, citing a right hip injury before what would have been his first 26.2-mile race in nearly two years.

Farah, who swept the 2012 and 2016 Olympic track titles at 5000m and 10,000m, said he hoped “to be back out there” next April, when the London Marathon returns to its traditional month after COVID moved it to the fall for three consecutive years. Farah turns 40 on March 23.

“I’ve been training really hard over the past few months and I’d got myself back into good shape and was feeling pretty optimistic about being able to put in a good performance,” in London, Farah said in a press release. “However, over the past 10 days I’ve been feeling pain and tightness in my right hip. I’ve had extensive physio and treatment and done everything I can to be on the start line, but it hasn’t improved enough to compete on Sunday.”

Farah switched from the track to the marathon after the 2017 World Championships and won the 2018 Chicago Marathon in a then-European record time of 2:05:11. Belgium’s Bashir Abdi now holds the record at 2:03:36.

Farah returned to the track in a failed bid to qualify for the Tokyo Olympics, then shifted back to the roads.

Sunday’s London Marathon men’s race is headlined by Ethiopians Kenenisa Bekele and Birhanu Legese, the second- and third-fastest marathoners in history.

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