Bolt wants to run 4x400 relay at London Olympics

Updated: 13 November 2011 10:11 IST

Usain Bolt wants to make the London Olympic Stadium his own and his 2012 Summer Games even more spectacular by seeking four gold medals, adding a shot at the 4x400 relay to his three sprints.

Bolt wants to run 4x400 relay at London Olympics
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Monaco:

Usain Bolt wants to make the London Olympic Stadium his own and his 2012 Summer Games even more spectacular by seeking four gold medals, adding a shot at the 4x400 relay to his three sprints.

The defending Olympic champion in the 100, 200, and 4x100 from the 2008 Beijing Games said on Saturday that if he is fit and Jamaica can challenge for gold, he wants a place on the long relay team, too, even though he has never competed in the event at the top level.

"If I can help to get them a gold medal, I will want to go on that team," Bolt said.

The last male athlete to win four gold medals in track and field at the Olympics was Carl Lewis at the 1984 Los Angeles Games. Finland's Paavo Nurmi won five at Paris 1924.

Despite false-starting in the 100 at the world championships in Daegu, South Korea, in August, Bolt still dominated the competition, anchoring the Jamaican team to a 4x100 relay world record and successfully defending his title in the 200.

After health problems affected his season through part of the year, Bolt is already upbeat for the Olympic season.

He said he has started his Olympic preparations, fully fit after ending the season with a slight Achilles tendon tweak. Last year, back problems saw him lose part the season and forced him to lower expectations.

"Injury wise, I am great," he said. "I have no problem and I started high intensity training."

He has always been a credible 400 runner and said on Saturday he wanted to contribute to the Jamaican team seeking to end a 60-year drought in the event. The Jamaicans have challenged recently but their last title came in the 1952 Helsinki Games.

The Americans traditionally have a hold on the long relay, and Bolt extending his reach to the event can only add spice to the intense sprinting rivalry between the two teams.

Even though his personal best stands at 45.28 seconds, his manager Ricky Simms said he had run a 43.58 split with a running start in a relay in a minor Jamaica meet last year. The individual world record stands at 43.18.

When asked if he wanted to run in the 4x400, Bolt said: "I've expressed that to my coach. If I am fit and I think I can do it."

His coach Glen Mills said he would reach his peak at 26.

"So definitely, (I'm) looking for this season. Twenty-five, I am getting there."

He also won three gold medals at the Berlin world champs two years ago and thinks he can top that at the Olympics.

"I definitely would want to try because if I do as well as in Berlin, the 4x4 would top it off and even make it a little bit much better," Bolt told reporters ahead of the decision on the IAAF athlete of the year.

"I will probably be in good shape and I know the guys are really stepping up the 400 level in Jamaica," he said.

The Olympic schedule would allow him to go for four golds, since he only would have to run the finals in the relays races. After the 100 on the third day on Aug. 5, he would not have another final until the last three days of the track schedule from Aug 9-11.

He will first have to take care of his training partner Yohan Blake.

Instead of the false-starting Bolt, Blake won the 100, and then ran the second fastest 200 in Brussels. Together, Bolt and Blake combined to set the world record and get the world title in the 4x100 in Daegu.

"The 200 is my favorite event. I won't let Yohan beat me," Bolt said. "I've said that to him, the 100 - maybe," he jokingly said.

He blamed his false start on seasonlong medical worries which limited his training on reaction time to the starting gun.

"I was trying hard throughout the season to get my start back," he said. "This season, I am going to be in great shape so it won't be a matter of getting my start."

Topics : Athletics Olympics 2012
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