Friday, April 19, 2024

Bolt: I’m running clean


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LONDON – Usain Bolt believes the recent doping scandals in sprinting hurt the sport and insists he’s running clean.
The world’s fastest man stopped short of condemning fellow Jamaican sprinters Asafa Powell and Sherone Simpson or American rival Tyson Gay, whose failed doping tests have left the sport in turmoil ahead of Worlds.
Both Powell and Gay claim they failed drug tests because they trusted people they didn’t know well.
Bolt doesn’t doubt his inner circle and was astounded by the suggestion he could inadvertently be given a banned supplement and test positive.
“What?! I am clean,” Bolt shot back while insisting he only takes vitamins not supplements. “You have to be careful as an athlete what you do and what you ingest, the food you eat and stuff like that.
“But I am not worried because  . . . I have a great team around me to make sure everything go smoothly.”
The recent positive tests, he said, could impact the image of the sport.
“Definitely, it’s going to set us back a little bit,” he said.“But as a person, I can’t focus on this.”
Bolt said it won’t affect his preparations for the upcoming World Championships in Moscow.
“I still have World Championships, everyone is stepping up their game, so I have to really focus on that,” he said. “I am just trying to work hard, run fast and hopefully help people to forget what has happened and just move on.”
He’ll run the 100 metres today and 4×100 relay tomorrow at the meet in London’s Olympic Stadium, which marks the one-year anniversary of the opening ceremony.
In his first public comments since news of the high-profile doping cases broke on July 14, Bolt promised that he won’t be the next sprint star to be embroiled in a scandal.
“I was made to inspire people and to run, and I was given the gift and that’s what I do,” the six-time Olympic champion said. “I am confident in myself and my team, the people I work with. And I know I am clean.
“So I’m just going to continue running, using my talent and just trying to improve the sport.”
If the recent cases have cast doubt about Bolt’s own integrity, the 100 and 200 metres World record-holder asked sceptics to check his record.
“If you were following me since 2002, you would know that I have been doing phenomenal things since I was 15,” the 26-year-old Bolt said. “I was the youngest person to win the World Juniors at 15. I ran the World Junior (200) record 19.93 at 17. I have broken every record there is to break, in every event I have ever done.” (AP)


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