Jamaican runner Yohan Blake shocked the track world on Friday when he beat world record holder Usain Bolt in the 100m dash at the Jamaican Olympic Trials. On Saturday, Bolt said movement by runners next to him made him get a bad start.
The Jamaica Observer reports Bolt said his fellow racers flinched in both the finals and the semifinals:
Bolt said in the finals he saw Nesta Carter beside him flinch, "I lost focus and when the gun went I was not focussed," and in the semi-finals "the guy next to me moved and it threw me off; I see these guys in my peripheral vision and it is kinda hard to ignore them so when they move its gonna throw me off a little bit and I got left and when I get left it is hard."
No false start was called, but track and field officials may be hesitant to call a false start because of the IAAF's one-and-done rule. The current rule disqualifies a runner after just one false start. Bolt was disqualified in the semifinals of the 2011 world championships. Though he's the world's fastest man, he's not the world champion.
I'm not alleging any wrongdoing on behalf of Jamaican track officials. It's more they are giving athletes the benefit of the doubt. In the face of a rule so harsh, who can blame them?
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