Sport

Getting sharp! Sprint phenom Bolt on track ahead of Games

Officials rubbish Blake-Bolt rivalry

BY PAUL A REID Observer Writer

Sunday, July 22, 2012    

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BIRMINGHAM, England — Aspirants for Usain Bolt's 100-metre title at the London Olympic Games should be nervous. In fact, very nervous.

Information coming out of the Jamaican camp here is that the world record-holder and Beijing Olympics sprint double gold medallist has been training well and is looking sharp.

"This is not the same Bolt we saw in Kingston," a source, who wished not to be identified, told the Sunday Observer yesterday. "He has been working hard and is looking really focused on his work."

The marquee Men's 100m final will be run on August 5, the day before Jamaica celebrates its 50th year of independence.

Bolt suffered shocking successive defeats in the 100m and 200m sprints at the hands of Racers Track Club teammate and Daegu World Championships 100-metre winner Yohan Blake at the Jamaica National Championships (Trials) at the back end of June.

Blake won the 100m in 9.75 seconds and the 200m in 19.80 seconds, both world-leading times this season.

However, it soon became evident that Bolt was suffering from an injury, which forced his coach Glen Mills to withdraw him from the Diamond League meet in Monaco, which was held last Friday.

Bolt's outstanding world records stand at 9.58 seconds for the 100m and 19.19 seconds for the 200 metres.

Meanwhile, representatives of Bolt and training partner Blake have both shot down suggestions that the Olympic champion has asked to train on his own.

Norman Peart, Bolt's manager, and Cubie Seegobin, Blake's agent, have both poured cold water on suggestions that there might be a rift between the two protagonists for the sprint crown at the London Olympic Games which start next week in London.

Reports surfaced earlier this week that Bolt had asked to train by himself at the University of Birmingham Munrow track and field complex.

The Jamaican team has been training behind heavy security at the recently re-laid university track.

Peart, however, told the Jamaica Observer in a telephone interview from Kingston on Friday night that the suggestions are "rubbish", as he had spoken to the athlete only hours before and there were no problems with his relationship with his teammates or Racers training partner.

Yesterday Seegobin, who was in Birmingham, echoed Peart's sentiments, adding that such a rumour is "garbage".

"You guys have no idea how close these two athletes are and people would be surprised," Seegobin told the Sunday Observer.

Meanwhile, impeccable sources told the Sunday Observer that reports of a hip injury to sprint relay pool member Schillonie Calvert were not true.

The source said Calvert, who was fifth in the 100m at the National Trials and is making her first Olympic team, participated in relay practice yesterday morning, training with the men's team and was running at full blast without any discomfort.

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