By Susan Porter, World-Track
LONDON — World sprint double champion Tyson Gay says he is conditioning himself to match or better anything arch rival Usain Bolt has to offer and is confident of defending his title in Berlin.
The pair has been matching each others’ performances from different venues all this season with Gay’s 19.58second over the 200m and 9.77 over 100m, slightly better than Bolt’s 9.79 and 19.59 performances.
“In 2009 I have had to train my mind to run what Usain Bolt is running, or to try to run faster than what he’s running,” the American was quoted as saying in the Telegraph. “You can’t programme your mind to run anything less than that.”
“I thought the bar had been raised and I knew what I had to do. Basically, what he did was phenomenal. It was so exciting. I knew I had to train my mind and my body to go where no man has gone before.”
Both sprinters will be in action at the Aviva London Grand Prix at Crystal Palace next weekend, but again they will be in separate events.
Bolt will chase more glory in the 100m against countryman Asafa Powell, while Gay hopes to land something big in the 200m before the World Championships next month.
“If I run around 19.5, then I’m pretty sure he’ll (Bolt) take that into consideration,” said Gay, whose 19.58 in the third fastest ever over the distance.
Interestingly, while Gay’s world-leaders were set in favourable conditions, Bolt had to risk the possibilities of injuries by racing in inclement weather pretty much everywhere he goes.
The margin of excellence this season has set the tone for what is to come in the month.
But with no lack of respect for the many talented elites around the globe – except for Powell, if he can get his mind set – it seems that Gay is the only man with a chance of preventing the Jamaican from repeating his Olympic accomplishments.
Photo: Track and Field Magazine