Bolt pulls plug on 2010 season

BY PAUL A REID Observer writer reidp@jamaicaoberver.com

Wednesday, August 11, 2010    

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A problem in his lower back that "restricts his ability to generate power to his stride" has force double world record-holder Usain Bolt to pull the plug on his 2010 season with two European meets to go.

A release from Bolt's agent Ricky Simms of Pace Sports Management yesterday said an "assessment from his medical team...found a problem in his lower back. He has a tightness that restricts his ability to generate power in his stride and continuing to race in this condition could risk injury to his hamstrings or calf muscles".

Bolt, who missed part of the season with an Achilles tendon problem was examined by world-renowned specialist Dr Hans Müller-Wohlfahrt in Munich, Germany, on Monday when the decision was taken to shut him down for the remainder of the season.

The release said further, "With a view to his future career we believe further treatment to loosen his back followed by a period of rest will be in his best interest."

Bolt, who will turn 24 later this month and who holds the world records in the 100m- 9.58 seconds and the 200m- 19.19 seconds, both set last year at the IAAF World Championships in Berlin, Germany, will miss the IAAF Diamond League meetings — Weltklasse Zurich and Memorial van Damme, Brussels.

Bolt, who lost to American Tyson Gay in a 100-metre race in Sweden last week, his first loss over the distance in two years, was disappointed to be ending his season prematurely.

"I'm very disappointed to miss two of the top meetings on the circuit -- Zurich and Brussels -- but trust that it is better for me not to take any risks this year."

With a view to the next two years and the IAAF World Championship in Daegu, South Korea next year and the Olympic Games in London a year later, he said in the release, "2011 and 2012 are very important Championship years and I hope to be back fully fit and healthy. I would like to thank everyone for their support and look forward to coming back stronger next year."

The release also reported that he has fully recovered from the Achilles injury.

"We are delighted to report that the MRI scan on his Achilles tendon showed that it has now completely healed," the release further stated.

Bolt is tied for fastest in the 100m this year, as his season best time of 9.82 seconds in Lausanne is the same as compatriot Asafa Powell.

He has the fastest 200-metres time in the world — 19.52 seconds set at the Jamaica International Invitational on May 1 — as well as the fastest 300m time — 30.97 seconds run in Ostrava, Czech Republic.

Bolt also anchored the fastest 4x100m relay when he led a Jamaica 'Gold' team, comprising members of his local Racers Track Club, to a 37.90 seconds for a meet record at the Penn Relays in late April.

Bolt competed 11 times this season, starting with a 400m (45.87 seconds) at the Camperdown Classic in mid-February and ran seven individual races.

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