|Usain Bolt, London Anniversary Games, July 2013|
Source: Ghostbusterray, Via Wikimedia Commons
Usain Bolt has etched his name in the sporting history books forever and rightly deserves the title of the fastest man on earth. Born in a small town in Jamaica, Bolt grew up with his parents, Wellesley and Jennifer Bolt, and his brother and sister, Sadiki and Sherine. Usain Bolts’ parents ran a grocery store, but Usain showed his sporting prowess from an early age, playing football and cricket in the street with his brother and Bolt has said that when he was young he had not thoughts of doing else, other than playing sports.
Usain Bolt has gained worldwide popularity after his double gold medal victory at the Beijing Olympics and he has gone on to become one of the best known athletes in sporting history. Nicknamed the Lightning Bolt, the sprinter has won many awards, including IAAF World Athlete of the Year, Track & Field Athlete of the Year, and Laureus Sportsman of the Year (three times). He has become the highest paid athlete ever in track and field sports and has been called the world’s most marketable athlete.
To top all his athletic victories and awards, Usain Bolt has also become an amazing ambassador for sport worldwide and he continues to be an inspiration and role model for children of all countries to take up sport.
There’s a lot more to Usain Bolt though than his towering 6’5″ frame, his world beating stride and his iconic victory stance. Here are twelve facts that you probably didn’t know about the fastest man on the earth, Usain Bolt.
1. He used to suffer from nerves
Hard to believe about the man who now looks so confident, but Usain Bolt used to have a serious problem with his nerves when he first started running. Even though he was far taller and physically stronger than the other competitors, the Lightning Bolt was so nervous at the World Junior Championship in Kingston, Jamaica that he put his shoes on the wrong feet and struggled to tie his laces. After his victory in the Championship, he promised himself that he would never let himself get that nervous again.
|Bolt during the 200 m final at the 2011 World|
Championships in Daegu.
Source: Erik van, via Wikimedia Commons
2. Why is he called the Lightning Bolt?
With his phenomenal speed and his surname, Usain Bolts nickname was probably inevitable, but the nickname was actually started by journalists, because there had been a lightning storm just before Usian Bolt’s first world record breaking 100 m run in New York on 31 May 2008
3. Usain Bolt is a Manchester United Fan
The sprinter is an avid sports fan and follows the soccer clubs Manchester United and Real Madrid. Bolt has said that his dream would be to play for Manchester United and he’s serious about that ambition too; he has said that he would be more than happy to do a trial for the famous English club.
4. He ate Chicken Nuggets for breakfast at the Beijing Olympics
Usain Bolt was apparently not too keen on the thought of eating Chinese food at the 2008 Beijing Olympics. Before his record breaking 100m run, it wasn’t some kind of special high protein food that he ate; it was chicken nuggets. According to Bolt himself, his pre-race regime was chicken nuggets for breakfast, then a couple of hours sleep and then some more chicken nuggets before the race.
5. His shoes were not tied in the 200m Olympic final in Beijing
Not only was he fuelled only by chicken nuggets when he broke the 100m world record in the Beijing 2008 Olympics, he was running into a strong wind and his shoelaces were untied. He was still faster than anyone else had ever been.
|Usain Bolt.2012 Summer Olympics.|
Source: By Darren Wilkinson
6. Usain Bolt has his own mobile app
Over three million people have given the thumbs up to a mobile app featuring the world being sprinter. In this downloadable app from Rock Live, a cartoon Bolt collects gold coins from pirates and runs faster when you feed him a Gatorade. Bolt! Became the No.1 app in Jamaica and reached No.2 in the US.
7. In high school, Bolt focused on cricket, not track
Usain Bolts passion was really cricket and soccer when he first went to William Knibb Memorial High School. It was his cricket coach who first noticed the runner’s exceptional speed and he encouraged Bolt to try track and field.
8. He has own restaurant
Usain Bolt owns his own restaurant in Kingston, Jamaica. It’s a Bolt themed sports bar and restaurant serving traditional Jamaican food called Tracks and records.
9. He does take his diet seriously most of the time
Despite the chicken nugget episode at the Beijing Olympics, Usain Bolt does normally eat a healthy diet which includes fried green bananas, yams and protein rich fish, pork and chicken. He is said to eat a diet that contains 60% protein, 30% carbohydrates and 10% fats and he doesn’t take any supplements.
10. Usain Bolt earns around $20m a year
The highest paid track and field athlete ever, Usain Bolt earns approximately $20m a year from his various sponsorship deals, branded products and prize money and appearance fees.