Rio 2016: Bolt storms to 200m gold


The majestic Usain Bolt once again broke new ground at Rio 2016 by storming to a third successive Olympic 200 metre title and the eighth gold medal of his illustrious career.

Bolt made history last weekend when he became the first man to win the 100m on three occasions, a time of 9.81 seconds enough to get the better of nearest rivals Justin Gatlin and Andre De Grasse.

A red-hot favourite over the longer distance, the Jamaican superstar did not disappoint on Thursday as he triumphed comfortably in 19.78secs to maintain his perfect record in Olympic finals and stay on course for a remarkable 'triple-triple'.

De Grasse (20.02) and Christophe Lemaitre (20.12) took silver and bronze respectively, the latter recording the same time as Great Britain's Adam Gemili, but Thursday's main event at the Olympic Stadium was all about one man.

Victory as part of his country's sprint relay team on Friday would see Bolt complete a clean sweep of golds in the 100m, 200m and 4x100m, as he did at Beijing 2008 and London 2012.

Although Bolt did not come close to his world record of 19.19, or indeed the respective winning times of 19.30 and 19.32 he recorded in the last two Olympic 200m finals, his victory never looked in doubt.

By the time he entered the home straight, the defending champion held a commanding lead over a tightly bunched chasing pack, who were reduced to fighting for second.

As Bolt cruised home, in his final individual Olympic race, De Grasse edged clear of the rest to add a silver medal to the bronze he claimed in the 100m.

France's Lemaitre - a bronze medallist in the 200m at the 2011 World Championships in Daegu - claimed third by the narrowest of margins.

Gemili was given the same time as Lemaitre, while Churandy Martina (Netherlands) was a mere hundredth of a second back in fifth.

LaShawn Merritt of the USA finished a disappointing sixth, ahead of Alonso Edward (Panama) and Ramil Guliyev (Turkey).

There was nothing but joy for Bolt, whose position as the greatest sprinter of all time has never been more certain.