BERLIN — Usain Bolt was honored by the city of Berlin by receiving an original segment of the Berlin Wall — nearly three tons of it.
The Jamaican sprinter, who broke world records in winning gold medals in the 100 and 200 meters, was presented with the piece of wall at a small ceremony Sunday, the final day of the world championships.
The 12-foot high section will be delivered to Bolt’s training camp in Jamaica.
The piece of the wall, which divided communist East Berlin from West Berlin between 1961 and 1989, is decorated with a life-size painting of Bolt running on the blue track of the Olympic stadium and the words “NEW WR” — new world record. Bolt set a world record in the 100 at 9.58 seconds and 19.19 in the 200.
“I will never forget Berlin,” Bolt said at the ceremony. “Ich bin ein Berlino.”
The bear mascot of the championships is called Berlino, while the phrase “ich bin ein Berliner” was used by former President John F. Kennedy during a visit to West Berlin.
Berlin Mayor Klaus Wowereit said Bolt had shown that “one can tear down walls that had been considered as insurmountable.”
The Berlin Wall came down in 1989, as communism was collapsing in Eastern Europe.
Long’s sportsmanship was not case of race, says son
By Pirate Irwin (AFP) – 1 hour ago
BERLIN — A world famous legend recalling how German Luz Long crossed racial barriers to help American rival Jesse Owens qualify for the long jump final at the 1936 Olympics has been downplayed by Long’s son Kai.
Kai Long said his father, whose actions helped Owens win the gold, prompting a furious Adolf Hitler to leave the stadium early, had simply acted within the old tradition of amateur sportsmanship.
“It was not a question of race, of being black and white,” said Long, who is attending the world athletics to watch the long jump final.
Canada’s reigning world silver medallist Gary Reed and Sudan’s reigning Olympic silver medallist Ismail Ismail both failed to qualify for the [800m] final, scheduled for 1525 GMT on Sunday.
Read full article here.
And in other results, LaShawm Merritt once again beat Jeremy Wariner to lead a 1-2 US rush to the 400m podium.
1 4 1206 LaShawn Merritt USA 44.06
2 6 1242 Jeremy Wariner USA 44.60
3 3 1113 Renny Quow TRI 45.02
Veronica Campbell-Brown also finished second, again to her nemesis, Alyson Felix. Felix has now won her third consecutive world championships 200m title.
21 August 2009
Position Lane Bib Athlete Country Mark
1 6 986 Allyson Felix USA 22.02
2 5 522 Veronica Campbell-Brown JAM 22.35
3 4 126 Debbie Ferguson-McKenzie BAH 22.41
All results from IAAF site …
Interesting blog post from Jimson Lee at speedendurance.com, who has broken down the 10m split times from both Tyson Gay and Usain Bolt over their most recent major meets.
[edit in: another excellent biomechanical analysis of Bolt’s potential here].
Compare Bolt’s last 10m from Beijing (1.73 sec) vs. his last 10m in Berlin (1.66 sec). Chased by Tyson Gay, Bolt actually ran through the last phase of the race this time.
Usain Bolt Splits – 9.69 vs 9.58 – Can He Run Faster?
August 17, 2009 by Jimson Lee
Honestly, I didn’t expect Usain Bolt to run sub 9.60.
I felt a WR was imminent after watching his SF, and I knew his chest thumping slowdown in Beijing showed me he could run low 9.60.
But a 9.58?
Now, in all fairness, I added Tyson Gay’s splits, just to show what it will take to beat Usain Bolt. I mentioned his 9.68 +4.1 wind aided race winning the 2008 USATF Olympic Trials in a previous post.
You can also thank Tyson Gay for making Bolt push though the race. Bolt came to Berlin to win. The World Record was bonus.
Read the entire article here