Usain Bolt

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Usain Bolt was born August 21, 1986 in Trelawny, Jamaica. He has a brother and a sister. His parents ran the local grocery store in their area, and Bolt spent his time playing cricket and football in the street with his brother. When Bolt entered high school, he focused on other sports. It wasn’t until his cricket coach noticed his speed and urged him to try track and field events. Pablo McNeil, a former Olympic sprint athlete, coached Bolt. He encouraged Bolt to focus his energy on improving his athletic abilities. Bolt won his first annual high school championship medal in 2001. He took home the silver medal in the 200 meters with a time of 22.04 seconds. Bolt is one of only nine athletes to win world championships at the youth, junior, and senior level of an athletic event. By the age of 15, he was 6 ft 5 in tall and towered over his competitors. At the 2002 World Junior Championships, he won the 200 meters in a time of 20.61 seconds. Bolt’s 200 meters win made him the youngest world-junior gold medalist ever. He broke the 200 meters and 400 meters Jamaican High School records with times of 20.25 seconds in the 200 meters and 45.35 seconds in the 400 meters.

Bolt turned professional in 2004 and was selected for the Jamaican Olympic squad despite a hamstring injury. Due to the leg injury, in the 2004 Athens Olympics, he was eliminated in the first round of the 200 meters with a disappointing time of 21.05 seconds. American colleges offered him track scholarships to train in the United States while continuing to represent Jamaica on the international stage, but he refused them all. In 2008, Bolt announced that he would double-up and compete in the 100 meters and the 200 meters events at the Beijing Summer Olympics. In the Olympic 100 meters final, Bolt broke his own world record and set a new one with a time of 9.69 seconds. Earning him his first gold medal. He also won the 200 meters Olympic final race with a time of 19.30 seconds. This time set a new world and Olympic record. Bolt became the first sprinter to break both records at the same Olympics. He won his third Olympic medal two days later, competing in the 4 x 100 meters relay team. At the 2012 London Olympics, Bolt won the 100 meters gold medal with a time of 9.63 seconds, improving upon his own Olympic record. With this win, he became the first man to successfully defend an Olympic sprint title since 1988. Bolt also won the gold medal in the 200 meters, making him the first man in history to defend both the 100 meters and 200 meters Olympic sprint titles. Following the Olympics he was confirmed as the highest earning track and field athlete in history. At the 2016 Rio Olympics, Bolt won gold medals in the 100 meters, 200 meters, and the 4 x 100 meters relay. He became the first athlete to ever win the events three times at the Olympics. Bolt also earned the “triple-triple”, three sprinting gold medals in three consecutive Olympics, and he finished his Olympic career with a 100% winning record.

Bolt has won the IAAF World Athlete of the Year Award six times, the Track & Field Athlete of the Year Award twice, the Jamaican Sportsman of the Year Award five times, and has also been given many other titles and awards throughout his career. Bolt is known as the “fastest man in the world”, with his record setting time of 9.58 seconds in the 100 meters. He finished his career with a total of nine gold medals earned at the Olympics. In January 2019, he announced his retirement, saying his “sports life was over.”

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