Born Usain St. Leo Bolt to Jennifer and Wellesley Bolt on August 21, 1986 in Trelawny, Jamaica, he is renowned worldwide for his extraordinary sporting exploits. He has been called the “Lightning Bolt” he stands 6 feet 5 inches tall and weighs 207 pounds. He has been labelled the fastest man alive to date and the most naturally gifted athlete the world has ever seen, and for good reason. He never ceases to amaze with his performances on the track.
He is regularly seen with a wide grin on his face while warming up before a race, he loves entertaining the crowd with some kind of antics. It is not only his trademark but his natural personality. He seems to have always been destined for stardom with what appears to be a laid-back and jovial attitude/approach to his trade. Athletically, everything just comes naturally for Bolt and that is why the world is astonished with every performance: the ease with which he blows past his opponents and shatter long-standing records.
At an early age Bolt showed exceptional promise in sports, even though it was more ‘field’ than ‘track’ events. He started with high jump due to his tall frame, and was very good at fast bowling in cricket. He started running the 200 meter event and impressed many times over. In the 2002 CARIFTA games he won four gold medals and soon after won gold at the World Junior Championships in Kingston, where he set a record in the 200 meters clocking 19.93 seconds. More impressive performances followed regionally for the young sprinter and in 2004 Bolt won gold at the World Junior Championships in Jamaica, again in the 200 meters.
Under the tutelage of Glenn Mills, he at first started to have problems with injuries and confidence issues on the big stage of world sprinting. After a year of disappointments he started to regain his promise with Mills stating that he pushed his personal record 19.88 seconds. Mills worked with several experts to improve Bolt’s technique, mental resistance and injury recovery time. Now back to his best, Bolt was slowly ushered into the 100 meters because Mills spotted a special trait that matched that of past greats in the event.
He made his Olympic debut in 2008 and became a three-time Olympic gold medallist winning the 100 meters in 9.69 meters along with two other world records. He was able to best this later on clocking in at 9.58 seconds. Another world record and a gold medal followed in the 200 and 4×100 events respectively in the Daegu World Championships. He did it all again to defend his titles in the 2012 London Olympics with gold in the 100 and 200 meters and also help set yet another record in the 4×100 meters.
Now referred to as the Honourable Usain Bolt, OJ, CD, he is estimated to be worth around US$20 Million dollars and is the highest ever paid track and field athlete according to his main sponsors Puma.
By Alexandra Daley