THE HAGUE, Netherlands (AFP) — Olympic sprint champion Usain Bolt's dream of completing the 100m in 9.4sec is feasible, according to a Dutch mathematical study whose findings were unveiled yesterday.
As the Jamaican prepares to defend his Olympic title in London, and also better his world mark of 9.58sec, the authors of a Tilburg University study concluded he could realise his objective of shaving another two tenths of a second off his current record.
"Usain Bolt has said he is targeting 9.4sec for the 100 metres and according to our results this is achievable as the absolute limit for a world record at the moment is 9.36sec," one of the study authors, Sander Smeets, told AFP.
The study used various mathematical and statistical models collated from the best times posted over 100m by the 1,034 best male athletes going back to 1991, Smeets explained.
The new study draws on an earlier one which Smeets carried out in 2008 which then suggested that the "ultimate world record" would be 9.51sec.
However, "in 2008, Usain Bolt's records were not included in our data, which we published before the (Beijing) Olympics," Smeets explained, adding the original version drew on data from only 762 athletes.
He added he hoped the new study would "inspire" the likes of Bolt to drive the time down.
Bolt, 25, said in April he believed that if he can retain his Beijing crowns — he also won the 200m and the 4x100m relay title — he would be regarded as a "living legend".