‘The 17-Year-Old Has Really Impressed Me’- Usain Bolt Has Hopes for Wonder Kid Before Tokyo Olympics 2020

Published 07/17/2021, 3:07 AM EDT

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Usain Bolt is arguably one of the greatest sprinters of all time. Although the Jamaican retired after the World Championships in 2017, he left a lasting legacy in the Olympic Games.

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However, ahead of Tokyo Olympics 2020, the Jamaican saw a couple of his world records broken by 17-year-old Erriyon Knighton. With just six days left for the Olympics, Bolt lauded Knighton’s potential.

Usain Bolt impressed with Knighton’s performance in US Olympic Trials

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During his career, Bolt made four appearances at the Olympics. Although his first appearance in the 2004 Athens Olympics ended due to an injury, he dominated the field in his next three appearances.

He won gold medals in the 100m, 200m and 4x100m relay categories in Beijing 2008, London 2012 and Rio 2016. However, he had to return his 2008 4x100m relay gold medal because his teammate Nesta Carter returned a positive dope test.

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Despite retiring four years ago, Bolt still holds the world record in all three categories. However, during the recent US Olympic Trials, Knighton shattered the 200m under-18 and under-20 world records set by Bolt as a 17-year-old in 2004.

While the American clocked 19.88s on June 26 to break Bolt’s 19.93s record, he clocked 19.84s the very next day at the trials to break his own record. Although he is just 17 years of age, Bolt admitted he is keen to see Knighton’s progress in the future.

The eight-time Olympic gold medallist said“The 17-year-old has really impressed me in the U.S trials, so let’s see in the near future what he will do.”

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Can Knighton strike gold at the Tokyo Olympics?

Despite being 17 years of age, Knighton looks a hot prospect for USA’s medal hopes in the track and field discipline. In addition, his 19.84s timing is just 0.1s off compatriot Noah Lyles, who leads the world this season with his 19.74s during last month’s trials.

USA Today via Reuters

Although Bolt won his first gold medal aged 22, Knighton has every chance to do one better and strike gold in Tokyo.

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Written by:

Sanket Nair

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Sanket Nair is an F1 Author at EssentiallySports. A Sports Management student, he is a huge fan of Sebastian Vettel and Daniel Ricciardo and hopes to see Red Bull break Mercedes' dominance and win the World Championship soon. Sanket has been hooked to the sport ever since he watched the battle for the 2010 World Championship go down to the wire at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.
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