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Rediff.com  » Sports » PHOTOS: Brilliant Bolt blazes to Olympic 100m gold

PHOTOS: Brilliant Bolt blazes to Olympic 100m gold

Last updated on: August 6, 2012 04:07 IST

PHOTOS: Brilliant Bolt blazes to Olympic 100m gold

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Usain Bolt lived up to all the hype of becoming a "living legend" at the London Games, decisively defending his 100-metre title by beating Jamaican training partner Yohan Blake in the defining race of the Olympics.

He was slow out of the blocks but once his giant stride got going he was unbeatable once again, leaving Blake and 2004 Olympic champion Justin Gatlin in his wake with the second-fastest time in history.

"I knew it was going to be like this. There wasn't a doubt in my mind it was going to be like this," Bolt said.

Bolt set an Olympic record of 9.63 seconds, just .05 of a second outside his world mark.


Image: Usain Bolt of Jamaica crosses the finish line to win the gold medal in the men's 100m final
Photographs: Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images

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Yohan Blake won the silver

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World champion Blake equaled his personal best with 9.75 and Gatlin took bronze in 9.79.

Unlike his showboating and coasting during a then world-record run at Beijing four years ago, Bolt was all business until near the finish on Sunday night, even leaning at the line.

That proved how seriously he took the challenge of his younger training partner, Blake.

Bolt ran on, then knelt and leaned his head downwards, kissing the track before standing and assuming his trademark "To The World" pose -- pointing both fingers in the air for the first time during the Olympics.

The crowd roared and later responded with chants of "Usain, Usain."

Blake celebrated with Bolt, the pair embracing in front of Jamaican fans in the jam-packed 80,000-seat stadium.


Image: Jamaica's Usain Bolt, left, celebrates winning gold alongside silver medallist Yohan Blake of Jamaica following the men's 100-metre final
Photographs: Sergey Ponomarev/AP

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'I was slightly worried about my start'

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Bolt has been troubled by a stuttering start since he was disqualified for a false start in the final of last year's world championship, which brought Blake to the fore.

In London, he proved that even with a slower kick out of the blocks, he still is in a class of his own.

"I was slightly worried about my start, I slipped a little in the blocks," he said. "I don't have the best reactions, but I secured it and that's the key.

"My coach told me to stop worrying about the start and concentrate on the end, because that's my best."


Image: Jamaica's Usain Bolt celebrates after winning the men's 100-metre final
Photographs: Marcio Jose Sanchez/AP
Tags: Blake , London

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Richards-Ross takes women's 400m gold

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Disappointment, tears and that oh-so-unsatisfying color -- bronze -- are all in the past for Sanya Richards-Ross. On this trip to the Olympics, she closed the deal.

Four years after a late fade left her crying and wearing the Olympic bronze medal, Richards-Ross won the 400-metre gold she always thought she should.

Nearly banging elbows with runners on both sides of her -- and with the defending champion making up ground on the outside -- Richards-Ross got stronger, not weaker, this time over the last 100 meters.


Image: United States' Sanya Richards-Ross, front left, crosses the finish line to win gold in the women's 400-meter final
Photographs: David J. Phillip/AP

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Ohuruogu of Britain finished second

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She surged to the finish, won by about a body's length and punched her fist when she crossed the line in 49.55 seconds Sunday night to give the U.S. its first track and field gold medal of the London Olympics.

"I just kept saying, 'You can do this, you can do this," Richards-Ross said. "I just dug really deep and I'm very happy."

Defending champion Christine Ohuruogu of Britain finished second in 49.70 and American DeeDee Trotter, decked out in red, white and blue glitter on her face, won the bronze in 49.72. This moment, though, belonged to Richards-Ross.

At the end, she wrapped herself in the American flag and went to the stands to embrace her husband, Jacksonville Jaguars defensive back Aaron Ross, who took time off from NFL training camp to travel to London.

"You finally did it, you finally did it, babe," he told his wife. "Enjoy the moment."


Image: Christine Ohuruogu of Great Britain celebrates winning silver in the Women's 400m final
Photographs: Alexander Hassenstein/Getty Images

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Kemboi wins Kenya's 1st track gold

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Ezekiel Kemboi won Kenya's first gold medal in track and field at the London Olympics in the 3,000-metre steeplechase Sunday night, eight years after winning at the Athens Olympics.

The two-time world champion won his second Olympic title in 8 minutes, 18.56 seconds.

European champion Mahiedine Mekhissi-Benabbad of France took silver in 8:19.08 and African champion Abel Mutai of Kenya took bronze in 8:19.73.


Image: Silver medalist Mahiedine Mekhissi-Benabbad of France celebrates with gold medalist Ezekiel Kemboi of Kenya after the men's 3000m Steeplechase
Photographs: Stu Forster/Getty Images

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Tripple jump glory for Rypakova

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Olga Rypakova of Kazakhstan won the women's triple jump gold medal Sunday at the London Olympics.

The 2011 World Championship silver medalist took the lead with the third of her six attempts, setting a mark of 14.98 metres.

Caterine Ibarguen of Colombia, the 2011 world championship bronze medalist, momentarily held the lead in the third round, but needed a jump of 14.80 on her final attempt to get the silver medal.

Reigning world champion Olha Saladuha of Ukraine finished in third place with a jump of 14.79 on her last attempt.


Image: Kazakhstan's Olga Rypakova competes to win gold in the women's triple jump final
Photographs: David J. Phillip/AP

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Hungary's Pars wins men's hammer throw

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Krisztian Pars of Hungary won the Olympic gold medal in the men's hammer throw.

Pars, the leading hammer thrower in 2012, made the winning throw of 80.59 metres on the third of his six attempts.

Primoz Kozmus, the 2008 Olympic champion from Slovenia, took silver at 79.36 and Japanese veteran Koji Murofushi earned bronze at 78.71.


Image: Hungary's Krisztian Pars competes in the men's hammer throw final
Photographs: AP

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