Jamaica trials boost Usain Bolt's confidence
Reuters in Paris
Olympic champion Usain Bolt believes he is getting back to his best after the Jamaican trials gave him a confidence boost in the build-up to next month's world championships in Moscow.
The world record holder won the 100 metres at last month's trials to secure his place at the worlds, having been given a wild-card entry into the 200m by Jamaica as defending champion.
"The trials helped me to get a lot of runs, to define where I should be," Bolt said ahead of Saturday's Paris Diamond League event, where he will run the 200m. "And after the trials, I felt more confident. It felt great to run and actually accelerate at the end."
Bolt was beaten by Justin Gatlin of the United States in the Rome Diamond League 100m last month after returning from a hamstring injury.
But victory in the 200m in Oslo a week later, in a then-world-leading time of 19.79 seconds, followed by his win in 9.94 seconds in the 100m at the national trials, showed he was getting back to his best form.
American Tyson Gay has recorded the season's fastest 200m of 19.76 seconds since the Oslo run and tops the world leading times for the 100m with 9.75 ahead of Gatlin and Bolt.
But the Jamaican, who won Olympic gold in the 100m, 200m and 100m relay at last year's London Games, having claimed the same haul at Beijing in 2008, was happier with his latest times.
"After my first race [in Rome], I wasn't pleased, really. But last year, I also started badly," Bolt said. "The second one [in Oslo] was better.
"When you get injured, the more you compete the better you start to run. The body gets used to the competition again, you see the mistakes and you work on them."
Bolt said he was working hard, was focused, and sacrificing a lot and on target.
He denied that Gay would be his only rival in Moscow, adding: "Everybody next to me in the finals [will be a challenger]. You'll have the top eight guys there."