One of the most amazing performances in my memory of sports occurred today. Most people have no clue that the World Championships in Track and Field are going on. Well just a quick synopsis from today. Usain Bolt won another world title. What a surprise huh? Everyone knows he is the greatest. Everyone knows of his amazing Olympic performances. He hasn’t lost a final in a major championship that he started since before 2008. So what’s the big deal? Why so special? Well let me set the stage.
Last year Bolt had to fight through injuries and began to look mortal. Same thing happened this year. He didn’t look the same unbeatable Bolt. He went into this weekend ranked 8th in the world.
Also there was another guy on the scene the past couple years by the name of Justin Gatlin. This guy hadn’t lost in 2 years. He had ran over .1 seconds faster than Bolt this year. Bolt’s best time going in was 9.87 while Gatlin had lived in the 9.7’s this season. Noone had even been close to him in a race.
The other little thing going on was the history of positive results for performance enhancing drugs in this year’s crop of top sprinters. Gatlin had served 2 separate bans. Tyson Gay and Michael Rodgers were 2 more top sprinters that had served doping suspensions in the past.
So that’s the stage. Bolt could have just threw in the towel earlier in the season when the injuries had him slowed. He could have hung it up and waited until the next season. He could have just sat on the sidelines and complained about cheaters winning the title this year. Instead he decided to fight the way he knows how. He line up and ran.
He didn’t give up. Not even when he stumbled in the semifinals and had to run everyone down just to make the finals. Even when everyone was saying the race was for second being Gatlin and Bolt would struggle to even get a medal. He lined up. He did the one thing he knows best. He won. Period. He ran the best race he ran all season when it mattered. He refused to lose.
To me this was the most amazing performance I have ever witnessed in sports. He showed why he is the greatest. Even when everyone was writing him off he was working. Working hard to get healthy.Working hard to get back in shape. Working hard to prove he is still the greatest. I think this year will only make him better. I think he found something inside that he didn’t know he had before.
He found the Warrior inside. Have you found yours?
Scotty Barnes, CSCS