Berlin 09 Diary: Day 6, USAIN BOLT, 19.19! Note by Larry Eder


I never, ever, ever, ever thought I would live to see a 19.19. I thought that Usain Bolt had to be wasted after running 9.58 on Sunday. In his first round, Usain Bolt did not look good, but each round, he looked a little better.


Usain Bolt in the early rounds, 200 meters, photo by

The final got off to a good start, with David Alerte of France causing a false start, which was given to the field.

As the race got off, Usain Bolt of Jamaica was out fast, and with a decent start. Actually, an exceptional start for Bolt. Bolt exploded as he came off the the turn and was charging, charging down the straightaway. Usain had the fastest start of the field, reacting in 0.133 from lane five. Next fastest was Shawn Crawford, lane eight, in 0.148.

Everyone else was running a different race. Usain Bolt kept charging down the straightaway as his long strides ate up more and more of the track! The crowd
was screaming as Bolt came down the straight, arms pumping, getting closer and closer to the finish line.

How fast would he run? I had no clue, but I knew that I was watching history! As Usain Bolt hit the finish line and ran through it, the Seiko Timing flashed 19.20, and I looked over at USATF's Tom Surber with my jaw dropped down. Then, the announcers came on and said, over the screaming, "19.19!"

The battle for second and third was all out. Alonso Edward of Panama and Wallace Spearmon. Edward came charging down the straightaway, after Bolt, and held on to the second place, in 19.81, an area record! Wallace Spearmon of the US, in 19.85, and
Shawn Crawford in fourth in 19.85. Steve Mullings of Jamaica, in fifth, in 19.89. In sixth, Charles Clark ran 20.39. Ramil Guliyev of Azbekistan ran 20.61 in seventh and David Alerte of France was eighth in 20.68.

What else can I say about Usain Bolt? This is the closest that I have seen him going all out, and I am not sure if there is someone alive who can run faster than him, at 100 or 200 meters. I am, completely, in shock.

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