• World Athletics Championships

Usain Bolt disqualified from 100m final, Blake wins

ESPN staff
August 28, 2011

Usain Bolt was disqualified from the final of the 100m at the World Championships in Daegu after a false start on Sunday, paving the way for compatriot Yohan Blake to claim gold in a time of 9.92s.

American Walter Dix came home a few metres adrift of Blake in second, with 35-year-old Kim Collins rolling back the years to pip France's Christophe Lemaitre to claim bronze. Neither medallist ran particularly quickly, in times of 10.08s and 10.09s respectively.

But the story was all about Bolt, who was expected to court the headlines for an entirely different reason. Having come into the championships claiming he needed to win both the 100m and 200m again to continue his pursuit of legendary status ahead of London 2012, the Jamaican had cruised through the opening rounds looking much closer to his imperious best than he has for much of the 2011 season.

He also looked calm and collected on the start line, laughing and joking with both the crowd and the camera as the eight sprinters took their places in the blocks. But tragedy was soon to strike, as Bolt jumped the gun - either through a lack of focus or desire to run a fast time - and triggered a fast start.

The world record holder knew immediately that he was the one that would receive the red card - tearing off his vest and remonstrating wildly as officials ordered a restart. As he trudged off the track he appeared to gesticulate angrily at the crowd behind the starting area, perhaps blaming the noise being made while he was trying to hear the gun for his mistake.

Nevertheless there was still a race to be run - with the gold medal suddenly there for anyone to take. Collins made the quickest start, bursting clear of Dix out of the blocks, and still led with 40 metres remaining. But Blake kicked on strongly, and the 21-year-old eventually moved comfortably ahead to cross the line first.

Yohan Blake was delighted to win © Getty Images

"I can't find words to explain it," Blake said afterwards, also thanking Bolt along with his coaches and family. "I feel like I want to cry. Trust me, I've been praying for this moment for my whole life.

"I knew I could catch him [Collins] because my last part [of the race] is crazy, and that proved to be the case.

"I felt sorry for Usain, my training partner. I had to take it out in the race for him."

Despite being defeated, Collins was upbeat - and will now target a strong showing at London 2012 next year.

"It was awesome," Collins said. "I didn't think they would catch me but I'm still happy to be on the podium. Now I will definitely be there next year!"

Bolt, watching from the bowels of the stadium, was visibly frustrated as his training partner won - perhaps angry at himself for scuppering the opportunity for the duo to claim a Jamaican one-two. He subsequently failed to attend the mixed zone for post-race interviews - a requirement of the IAAF - with his agent admitting that he could not find his client.

Earlier in the day, Team GB sprinter Dwain Chambers suffered a similar fate to Bolt - as he was disqualified from the opening semi-final for flinching off the line.

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