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Sprint legend Jim Hines says Gay can't outrun Bolt

By Gary Smith and Miranda Mitchell, World-Track

boltusain1BERLIN — Former Olympic and world record holder Jim Hines doesn’t believe his fellow American Tyson Gay will be able to stop Usain Bolt from dominating the sprints at the World Championships which start this morning in Berlin.

Gay, the reigning world champion has been in superb form this season and believes he is capable of beating Bolt when the pair clash in the sprints in the Berlin Olympic Stadium.

But Hines, who dominated the 100metres for over a decade, doesn’t think the American will be able to match the triple world record holder and triple Olympic champion.

"He (Gay) can’t (outrun Bolt)," Hines said. "I’ll just be honest with you.

"What would get him is the (long) strides of Bolt. Gay will beat him out of the blocks, for the first 50-60 meters, then destruction is going to set in.

"Bottom line: Gay knows this. He’s going to have to break through the psychology."

Hines, the 1968 Olympic 100m and 4x100m relay gold medallist also backs the Jamaican to rule the sprints for another 10 years, should he stay injury free.

The American who became the first to officially run under 10 seconds, added that Bolt is well on the course to produce his predicted 9.55secs and is capable of easily running 9.60secs this season.

"If anyone is going to run through that ((9.60s) barrier, he’s probably capable of doing it," Hines said of Bolt. "If he ever gets good competition or runs a complete race with a great start, he could run 9.60secs this season, very easily.

"If Bolt stays healthy, he should dominate for the next 10 years," Hines added, while reflecting on his dominating world record performances that lit up the Beijing Olympics last summer.

"It was just amazing — it really awed me. Watching him run that time he ran and kind of slow down at the end, kind of showboating, he could have run faster. It made the point in my mind that he’s the greatest sprinter at the present time, period."

Both Gay and Hines has described Bolt as a "monster," but the sprint legend says the world hasn’t seen anything as yet.

"He’s just a monster," the 62-year-old track observer said.

"I have to watch. I’m the first person (to break 10 seconds), I’m part of the fraternity, and I know exactly what’s going on. It brings back a lot of great memories.

"What impresses me most is the fact that he’s a tall sprinter and he gets into gear pretty quickly at that height, especially running the 100 meters.

"Once he works on his start more, and learns how to really come out of the blocks in a powerful manner and get into transition really quickly, you think he’s a monster now, he’ll be unbelievable."

Hines also believes that Bolt’s fellow countryman and former 100m world record holder Asafa Powell will struggle as long as Bolt is around.

"His problem is Bolt is in his head. Bolt has been in his head the last couple years," Hines said.

Put together by a member of the World-Track and Field Website team members. This is usually done by an in house member with able assistance from someone or an agency reporting from outside.



  1. Mike

    August 15, 2009 at 8:18 am

    Remember Ben Johnson! He was not a tall sprinter but a strong one. Even though he was convicted of steriods but yet, the steriods help him to produce super stride length and stride frequency. Tyson gay is the stronger man! but who knows how healthy he is. Bolt is not unbeatble!

  2. PC

    August 15, 2009 at 9:19 am

    Well said Jim Hines…you should know, you have been there done that!

  3. Mike

    August 15, 2009 at 9:52 am

    This is not 1968!

  4. Tamika

    August 15, 2009 at 2:20 pm

    I’m a jamaican and as much as i love to hear the good things about bolt I also know he’s not unbeatable. It IS possible Gay can beat him. For that to happen Gay will have to be the fastest out of the blocks and run away with it. However if Usain bolt is out of the blocks first or say out of the blocks at the same timke with Tyson Gay then I’m sorry the race will be over in favour of Bolt. I believe Gay knows his only chance is to lead from the start. Of the two sprints I believe Gay has more of a chance in the 100m than the 200m. The other factor I think is overlooked is determination, the fact that Bolt hates to lose. To say he wants this is an understatement. He would not want to lose so soon after being crowned the King of Track.Gay and Bolt are superb athletes and I wish them both the best. But being Jamaican you can’t fault me if I offer more prayers for Bolt than Gay 🙂

  5. Roger

    August 15, 2009 at 2:45 pm

    Usain has everything that Gay has but one thing that Gay doesn’t. That is height and length of stride and that you cannot teach. Gay wasn’t born with it and that is his dissadvantage. As Gay gets better, Usain will be getting better too and will always have his height and stride and so he will always better than Gay. Usain will be beatable when he gets hurt or old.

  6. Jamaican In Japan

    August 15, 2009 at 6:18 pm

    Well said… growing up in Jamaica, you train your mind to be great. Bolt is there, he’s got it. And no one is going to take it. When you grow in a place like Trelawny, where sugar cane and banana are king, you don’t reach the top of something on the world stage and consider sharing it.

    The one person who will be able to beat Bolt is Jago’s Blake (…once he’s off this drug thing)

    Pardon my bias, but growing up in Ocho Rios, one parish over from Bolt’s… I chose lighting strike Berlin twice (…minimum)

  7. Kahmu

    August 17, 2009 at 12:09 am

    Tamika doesn’t make any sense. She can’t be a real Jamaican with such poor logic…then again we do have some bhutoo folk from the bush.

  8. PC

    August 17, 2009 at 5:16 pm

    Just for the record Tamika, Tyson’s reaction time was 0.144 and Usain’s was 0.146, meaning Tyson was very slightly faster than Usain out of the block, but Bolt had him covered in less than 10m.


    August 17, 2009 at 5:42 pm


  10. sylvan

    August 18, 2009 at 12:13 pm

    with youth and injury free and staying level headed, i do not see gay getting the better of bolt

  11. joseph

    August 18, 2009 at 1:06 pm

    Gay needs to stop ducking Bolt at international meets, and instead race him whenever and wherever. Sure Bolt might win a lot of the races but Gay needs to declare war and say that I’m just going to keep coming at you. This way instead of dodging Bolt and allowing Bolt to rest, he can force Bolt to push it to the maximum and work more. This is the stuff that great rivalries like Mike Powell and Carl Lewis in the long jump.

  12. dave mcpherson

    August 20, 2009 at 5:15 am

    keep dreaming jamaican in japan.i do hope it isnt synethia,caz i ld hate to buss ur bubbles.blake is three yrs younger than bolt but just like theres one jardan,theres one doesnt help that theyre coach by the best sprint coach in the world.blake will be very good,but dont forget powell has learn how to relaxed,so second place isnt waiting for blake,he has to work for it.

  13. Scott

    August 20, 2009 at 11:49 am

    Sure Bolt is beatable, but his world record is not. He will be the only one to beat that record. I do see him losing some races in the next few years dew to injury or not being in shape early in the season.

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