“I Need to Pay Homage: Justin Gatlin Finally Reveals Why He Bowed Down to Usain Bolt on His Final Race

Published 10/31/2021, 4:03 AM EDT
LONDON, ENGLAND – AUGUST 05: Justin Gatlin of the United States is congratulated by Usain Bolt of Jamaica following his win in the Men’s 100 metres final in 9.92 seconds during day two of the 16th IAAF World Athletics Championships London 2017 at The London Stadium on August 5, 2017 in London, United Kingdom. (Photo by Shaun Botterill/Getty Images)


Justin Gatlin is one of the fastest men of all time. The track and field star has always stunned us with his performances in the 60 meters, 100 meters, and 200 meters. Gatlin completed the 100 meters race in just 9.74 seconds, making it his personal best. He is one of the only men to have come close to beating the world record set by Usain Bolt.

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As a sprinter, Gatlin won the 100m gold in the 2004 Summer Olympics and the 2005 and 2017 World Championships. Furthermore, he also won gold at the 2005 World Championships in the 200 meters. Usain Bolt, the 8 times Olympic Gold Medalist, considered Gatlin as one of his finest competitions.

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Recently in an interview, Justin Gatlin was asked about the extraordinary move he made to Usain after winning the 2017 World Championships. He revealed why he bowed down to Usain Bolt.

Gatlin said, “It wasn’t, it definitely wasn’t planned. It was something that happened at the moment and I know what it feels to be, to be in the twilight of your career. I know what it feels like to wake up the next day and say, you know what this might be my last race.” 

“I’ve been in the sport long than he has been in the sport and when it was his last race like I said he pulled something out of me and made me work harder than I ever thought I was going to so I felt like I need to pay homage,” he added.

Justin Gatlin has immense respect for Usain Bolt

At the moment, it was not between two countries, but two athletes. All Gatlin wanted was to bid Usain goodbye memorably.

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RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – AUGUST 18: Usain Bolt of Jamaica celebrates after he wins Gold in the final of the Men’s 200m on Day 13 of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games at the Olympic Stadium on August 18, 2016 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

“It wasn’t a team America USA thing, it wasn’t a team Jamaica thing. It was an athlete who worked to be the best he could before himself and the world applauded him and I wanted to give him his flowers before it before he left,” said the star athlete, Gatlin.

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After retirement, Usain has already found himself in other fields, one of which is music. The athlete has also shown his interest in traveling and visiting new places.

It will be interesting to see if he reacts to Gatlin’s comments.

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Richa Goswami

129 articles

Richa Goswami is a US Sports writer at EssentiallySports. As an adherent learner, she uses her journalistic persona to navigate through new skills. Richa has completed her schooling at Don Bosco.

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