Bolt regains 100 crown
Bledman, Thompson out in semis
Kwame Laurence in Moscow
Don’t worry ’bout a thing” blared from the Luzhniki Stadium speakers, here in Moscow, Russia, yesterday, ahead of the IAAF World Championship men’s 100 metres final.
The famous Bob Marley song, officially titled “Three Little Birds”, had a calming influence as Marley’s fellow-Jamaican Usain Bolt prepared for showtime.
Marley, it seemed, had risen from the dead to assure the world that his fellow-legend would regain the global title that had been so cruelly yanked from his grasp in Daegu, Korea two years earlier, a false start having ended Bolt’s bid to repeat as 100m world champion.
Marley was right. Just 9.77 seconds after the starter’s gun went off, Bolt eased across the line, his golden run in the rain earning him his first title at the 2013 edition of the Championships.
American Justin Gatlin secured silver in 9.85 seconds, while bronze went to Jamaica’s Nesta Carter in 9.95.
“It was not a revenge for Daegu. I just came here to win this title.
“I cannot forget Daegu because all you guys keep reminding me,” a laughing Bolt continued. “I wanted to do a better time but was not able to because of the weather. This is just one of those days—not ‘singing in the rain’, but ‘running in the rain’ tonight!”
Trinidad and Tobago sprinters Keston Bledman and Richard “Torpedo” Thompson exited the 100m in the semi-final round.
Bledman finished third in heat three in 10.08 seconds, while Thompson clocked 10.19 for fifth spot in the opening semi.
Only the top two in each heat earned automatic berths in the final.
“I stumbled out the blocks,” Bledman told the Express. “I had to pop up on my drive phase and try to run back in the race. It’s disappointing, but I put my best foot forward.”
Thompson, too, was not satisfied with his performance.
“Unfortunately, things just didn’t come together today as I expected it to and as I wanted it to, but that’s how it goes sometimes. You're not always on top of your game and this year was definitely one of those years for me. It’s just a humbling experience.”
Thompson, who was unable to compete as often as he would have liked to this season because of a hip injury, was in surprisingly good spirits following his elimination. The 2008 Olympic 100m silver medallist didn’t seem to be worried “’bout a thing”. And for good reason.
“I’ve experienced so much in my life, I’ve been blessed with so many other things this year—the birth of my baby boy (Rhys), and I’m just so proud of that. I’m disappointed about today, but I have that to go back to when I get home, and that’s comforting to me. I thank God for that blessing, and I just pray that he continues to bless me in so many ways. I’ve seen so many good things happen to me over the years."