Usain Bolt Lights Up a Damp Paris Track

Sudeshna BanerjeeAnalyst IJuly 19, 2009

PARIS - JULY 17:  Usain Bolt (R) of Jamaica crosses the line to win the Mens 100m during the IAAF Golden League Track and Field meeting on July 17, 2009 in Paris, France.  (Photo by Michael Steele/Getty Images)

If Tyson Gay set the Rome track on fire with his thundering 9.77 seconds finish in the 100m, can Usain Bolt be far behind?

The weather in Paris on 17th July did bring a pall of gloom on the organizers and the avid fans, but not Bolt.

The 23-year-old flamboyant Jamaican, nicknamed ‘’Lightning Bolt’’ blazed through in 9.79 seconds, at the Golden League meeting, undeterred by a poor start and unfavourable weather.

The triple Olympic gold medalist, despite not being at his best, managed to produce his best performance of the season which is only 0.02 seconds short of the 9.77 seconds set by Gay this year.

"I'm at 85 per cent - there is more work for me to do. It wasn't a perfect race but it was good enough for me," said Bolt. "I need to work harder on my start but, even if I get a pretty bad start, I should get up to speed because the last part is the best part of my race."

‘’I was careful because I didn’t want to get injured...You don’t want to be injured at this time in the season just before the World Championships so you just have to be cautious.’’

The performance may be nowhere near his record 9.69 seconds set at the Beijing Olympics last year but it was a clear indication he is gradually improving to peak at the World Championships at Berlin.

As athletics fans around the world wait for the Championships with bated breath, there is another rollicking contest between the American and the Jamaican marquee athletes but only in 4x100m relay.

The coveted event is the The Aviva London Grand Prix at Crystal Palace to be held on July 24 and 25.

Bolt will be exercising his skill in 100m and Gay will be honing his technique in 200m and thus they wont be able to cross swords with each other except the relay.

Thus the best is saved for the last as the world anxiously looks forward to the two glittering nights in Berlin which will make up for the drama that we missed at Beijing.