Image Credits: The Telegraph

The most successful athlete of World Championships, Usain Bolt, the greatest sprinter, and fastest man in the world and has earned the media nickname “Lightning Bolt”. He is a track and field legend and world record holder, who is awarded the Laureus World Sportsman of the Year (four times), BBC Overseas Sports Personality of the Year (three times), IAAF World Athlete of the Year (twice) and Track & Field Athlete of the Year (one time). Usain Bolt is the only sprinter to win 9 Olympic Gold Medals at three consecutive Olympics – 2008, 2012 and 2016 participating in 100m, 200m, and 4×100m relay. Sadly, in 2017 the International Olympic Committee took away Bolt’s Gold Medal for 4x100m relay (2008) because his team member Nesta Carter was found guilty of consuming drugs.

In 2019, Usain Bolt’s net worth was estimated at USD 90 million.

Track and field is a sport where hundredths of seconds separate the winner. The man who’d beat Michael Johnson’s records after 16 years had finally arrived. In his most illustrious sports career, Usain Bolt represented Jamaica in the men’s athletics in 100 meters, 200 meters and 4 × 100 meters relay events bring home a total of 23 Gold medals, 5 Silver medals and 1 Bronze medal. He participated in track and field events at the Olympic Games, World Championships, World Relays, CAC Championships, Commonwealth Games, World Junior Championships, and World Youth Championships. Beyond participating and winning medals, Bolt holds 19 Guinness World Records. 

Image Credits: Guinness World Records

Usain St Leo Bolt, a former sprinter retired in 2017 after he suffered an injury at IAAF Worlds Championships in London on August 12, 2017. In the last 50 meters of the 4x100m relay he tore his left hamstring falling on the track. Usain Bolt failed to finish his final race due to the fall.Team Jamaica lost the 4x100m relay event. Great Britain went on to win with USA finishing in second and Japan in third.

Image Credits: USA Today
Image Credits: USA Today

Stepping into the Limelight

In 2002 at the age of 15 years, Usain Bolt was the youngest to win a Gold medal at World Junior Championships in Kingston, clocking a record 20.61 secs in 200m at the National Stadium. This was his golden gate entry to a world stage. His popularity was growing. Howard Hamilton, a Public Defender by the government, urged the JAAA to train and prepare Bolt, “the most phenomenal sprinter ever produced by this island”. This is when the Former Jamaican Prime Minister P. J. Patterson recognizing the potential in Bolt arranged for him to move to Kingston, to train with the Jamaica Amateur Athletic Association (JAAA) at the University of Technology, Jamaica. While young Bolt was training in the capital city of Kingston, he was also getting distracted by partying in Kingston’s clubs, eating junk food and playing basketball with friends.

However, in the years 2002 to 2004, during his training he injured himself several times, which made authorities sit back and question if he was ready to represent Jamaica in world events. In 2003, he got conjunctivitis and had to drop out of the World Championship Finals in Paris. The dejected Bolt still managed to win IAAF Rising Star Award for the 2003 season on the strength of his junior record-equaling run. But in 2004, under his new coach Fitz Coleman, he turned a new leaf beginning with the CARIFTA Games in Bermuda. While most were doubtful if Bolt could face international competition at the age of 17, some knew he was ready for the next Olympics at Athens in 2004. Notwithstanding these reservations, Bolt’s name was submitted to the Jamaica Olympic Association (JOA) by the local body JAAA, to compete in the 200m track event. JOA after many internal debates decided to allow Bolt to debut in the Olympics in the 200m run. Unluckily, Bolt finished 5th with a time of 21.05 secs compared to his earlier 20.61 secs. But this did not deter him from cutting a birthday cake to celebrate his 18th at the Olympic Games. The boy in the company of men had lost today but it was only the beginning.

The beginning of Greatness

Image Credits: Pinterest

Born on August 21, 1986, to Wellesley and Jennifer Bolt in Sherwood Content, Jamaica, Bolt grew up with his brother Sadiki and sister Sherine. His parents ran a grocery store. He studied at Waldensia Primary School and William Knibb Memorial High School. At school, he began sprinting where at the age of 12 he was the school’s fastest 100-meter runner. In 2001, when he was 14, he entered the first competition and won the high school championships with a silver medal in the 200m race.

Win from Within

From a biographical film on Usain Bolt directed by Benjamin and Gabe Turner titled ‘Am Bolt’, to sponsorship with Puma, to a gaming app Bolt by Apple iOS, to co-founding Bolt Mobility an electric scooter company, Usain Bolt continues to sprint in many directions to ‘win from within’. Furthermore since his retirement in 2017, he has been dividing his time between his foundation, ‘Usain Bolt Foundation’ for the education of children and his music and sports bar ‘Tracks and Records’.

Too soon to retire in life, Bolt…keep winning!

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