By Gary Smith, World-Track
LONDON — Great Britain’s former Olympic 200m silver medallist Darren Campbell, believes Usain Bolt will not be beaten if he shows up with his best performances on any given competition day.
"The reality is, if Usain Bolt pulls out his best performance, no he can’t be beaten," Campbell said on BBC Five Live, shortly after Bolt’s dominating run in Paris last Friday.
"He’s a class act….he’s the fastest man in the world, that’s special," he added.
And Bolt himself is just as confident, stating that not even his closest rival, American Tyson Gay has the capacity to beat him if he is at his best.
"On my best day I don’t think he’s [Tyson Gay] going to beat me," the triple world record holder said, ahead of his 100m race at the Aviva London Grand Prix this Friday.
"I would say I’ll always be faster than Tyson Gay. I’m trying to stay that way but you never know, one day I might not be. I think he knows he needs to do a lot because I’ve shown that I’m a very good athlete," he added.
However, Campbell, pointed out that with Bolt showing proof of being an inconsistent starter, those chasing the Jamaican must always come prepared for anything.
"What you have to be able to do as an athlete chasing Bolt is be prepared to give your best performance and hope he under performs."
The 22-year-old has been nothing short of marvelous in the past two seasons.
Is Carl Lewis being reminded?
He resurrected the sprinting fraternity at the Beijing Olympic Games last season with three phenomenal world record performances from his three races.
Those performances have seen Bolt being associated with several world-class sprinters before him, including his fellow countryman, the late Herb McKinley.
However, it is American legend and Olympic multi-gold medallist Carl Lewis, who Campbell is reminded of when he watches the world record holder.
And interestingly, it is the same Lewis, who questioned Bolt’s meteoric rise to stardom in the 100m and 200m, where he has set world bests of 9.69seconds and 19.30seconds.
"We haven’t seen someone like Usain Bolt [in years]. The last time we saw some body like him was Carl Lewis," an observant Campbell said. "When we all saw Carl Lewis run for the first time he was relax it just looked effortless."
He added: "I’ve always said sprinting is an art form when it is done right. Over the last five or ten years, all the sprinters have been smaller, very compact and very powerful.
"But what Bolt is showing now [is that] you don’t have to be big, you don’t have to have a tremendous amount of muscle [to sprint]. If you can put the relaxation and the power together, you get Usain Bolt."