Other sports

Athletics Betting: "I know I can run faster," says Usain Bolt

Athletics RSS / / 16 July 2009 / Leave a Comment

Free Bet

The fastest man in the world is promising something special when he attempts to break his own world record in Paris tomorrow night. Ralph Ellis reports...

Sport has a long history of 'what ifs'. What if Maradona hadn't got away with the 'hand of god' goal in 1986? What if Gazza had got his foot an extra inch forward to score the winner against Germany in extra time in 1996? What if David Beckham hadn't got sent off in 1998? What if he'd been fit in 2002?

Here's another more recent one. What if Usain Bolt had just kept running flat out in the 100metres final in Beijing rather than started showboating with 20 yards to go? His amazing run to Olympic Gold had to be the defining sporting image of last year: those massive long legs, not so much running as cruising, a breathtaking 9.69 seconds that captured the essence of pure sport and the pure joy of running fast. There were those who said he was show-boating, but he was simply a man lost in the excitement of winning the biggest prize his sport has to offer.

But it left a question. How fast could he complete that distance? Where once there were eminent scientists who ruled it was a physical impossibility for a man to run 100metres in less than 10 seconds, now you started to wonder if it could be done in less than nine-and-a-half.

Well, watch the weather forecast, because tomorrow we might just find out how much Bolt could take off that time if he's applying himself only to breaking a record and not to winning a race.

Bolt runs in the IAAF Golden League meeting in Paris and has promised to offer "something special" to the crowd. He's appearing in only a handful of events this summer in the build up to the world championships, the next of them in the London Grand Prix next weekend when he'll race Asafa Powell.

That means when he is on the track there will be an accent on quality, and he's been talking up his chances of improving that record. "I know I can run faster," he told a press conference in Paris. "The world record can go at any time. If the weather in Paris stays as it is, warm with a breeze, there could be something special."

That promises a good lesson for Britain's Simeon Williamson, who will be in tomorrow night's race. The 23-year-old from North London has just run Europe's fastest 100metres of the year when he clocked 10.05 seconds at Birmingham, and the statisticians reckoned a tough headwind made that the equivalent of 9.90. It's still not quick enough to trouble Bolt, and it's not hard to understand why you can't back the Jamaican against the field at less than [1.08].

But if you fancy a flutter there's a spread of between [2.62] and [4.2] for the giant sprinter to beat his own world best. Try putting up something like [3.5] and see if you can get it matched.


Five things you might not know about Simeon Williamson

1. Born in Islington in 1986 to Jamaican parents, he was persuaded to join Highgate Harriers athletics club by a teacher who'd seen how fast he ran in a school football game


2. British high-jumper Germaine Mason is his second cousin


3. He refused to share a room with Dwain Chambers at the 2008 Indoor World Championships


4. Speed obviously runs in the family. His grandmother Pearline made headlines last year after chasing a mugger down a North London street - at the age of 78!


5. He had his wisdom tooth taken out in June this year

Read More Other sports

World Indoor Athletics Champs: Ennis and Farah both vulnerable

Although the broadcasters will be focusing on the fortunes of Farah and Ennis this weekend, Istanbul will tell us little about London 2012. And a good job too, as both Brits are vulnerable, writes Jack Houghton....

Betfair Big Interview: SPOTY nominee Dai Greene

The BBC Sports Personality of the Year awards have never caused so much debate and controversy. With just a week to go, Betfair went to Bath University to meet one of the ten men on the shortlist, 400m hurdles world...

World Athletics Championships Betting: Idowu can land us a profit

Two final bets for the last day of what has been a thoroughly entertaining World Athletics Championships. Philips Idowu can claim another gold medal for Great Britain and a Russian can beat an odds-on shot in the women's 1500m....

World Athletics Championships Day Nine: Beware or Believe?

Athletics championships pose punters a problem. With a plethora of short-priced favourites, it's always hard to separate the genuine sporting titan from the overhyped chancer. During the nine days of World Championship action in Daegu, Jack Houghton tells us which...

Post a comment

Free £20 Bet + Up to £1,000 Cashback

Join Today
How to claim your £20 Free Bet + £1,000 Cashback offer
  1. Open your account (3 mins)
  2. Make a deposit into your account and place a bet on your selection (minimum £20)
  3. Should your selection lose we'll refund your bet + get cashback on your betting for your first 30 days up to £1,000
  4.   £20 Free Bet + £1,000 Cashback, Join Today

Get a $50-$2500 Poker Bonus

Play Now

Choose and earn a $50, $250, $500, $1000 or $2500 poker sign up bonus. Turn Loyalty Into Cash and earn up to 40% Valueback in the Players Club.

Join Betfair Poker Now.

£200 Casino Bonus

Play Now

100% deposit bonus up to £100 for all new casino players. Just join and play to claim.

Join Today. Click here to claim your £200 Casino Bonus

Refer a Friend

START REFERRING

Each friend you introduce to betfair can earn you between £25 and £50.

Refer and Earn Today

Related Sites

© Betfair 2007–12 | Contact Betting.Betfair team on: haveyoursay@betfair.com

Proud to back    

Betfair UK | Australia | Online sázení | Betfair Danmark | Wetten | στοιχήματα | Apuestas | Fogadas | Ireland | Scommesse | Norge | Онлайн ставки | Kladjenje | Vedonlyönti | Apostas | Zakłady | Vadhållning | 网上投注 | Betfair Corporate | Betting Education