Posted August 10, 2012 on
AP on Fox
Track official Gordon Staines has two special words for Usain Bolt: ''Thank you!''
Staines is the guy who fired the gun to start the men's 200-meter final Thursday night, and he's downright thrilled that Bolt and his other competitors stayed ''steady'' at the start of the race and that no one had to be disqualified.
''I know I breathed a big, big sigh of relief when the gun went and they went and there was no recall,'' he said Friday.
Staines, who is from Chesterfield in central England, is one of the thousands of people who perform those anonymous tasks that make the Olympics happen.
They are the scorers and people who start clocks in every sport. There's the guy who swims to the center of the water polo pool to place the ball on a little stand before play opens. There's an army of helpers who race to the center of the beach volleyball court to keep the sand raked and smooth.
There are people who hold out the medals on the trays, people who place the hurdles on the track. The guy who runs out and measures where the shot put hits the ground, the guy who picks it up and returns it, and the guy who loads the weights onto the barbells in weightlifting.
At the Velodrome, there's the slow-cycling person in a hat who rides ahead of competitors before the keirin races begin.
And in London, dare we forget, there was also the queen's stunt double for the opening ceremony who dropped out of a helicopter to attend the games.
But all that pales compared to jobs like the one performed by Staines, the focus of international attention, if only for an instant. Who would want the job of potentially disqualifying Bolt? He had false started in the World Championships in the 100 meters last year. No pressure there.
''I can remember giving the command on your marks and the crowd going quiet,'' he said. ''To think you've got 80,000 people in the stadium watching, you've got millions around the world watching, it then really hit home.''
The gun isn't a .45 caliber or anything. It's really a high-tech instrument wired to the blocks. The system recognizes a release in pressure. If there's a false start, Staines gets a beep in the ear and a computer printout on who was responsible. Most of the time though, he can see it.
Staines described the start.
''All the athletes responded to my command of `on your marks' immediately. They all walked to the blocks. There was no gamesmanship. They all got down on the blocks together. They settled. The crowd went quiet. I held the nerves. I gave the set command. Every athlete risen (sic) together. They came up together. They stayed there. I fired the gun.''
It all took 2.0 seconds. In the start world, that's perfect. No beeps in the ear.
''I went to bed last night (and) the adrenaline rush was still there,'' he said. ''I'm still on a high.''
BEST OF MAXIM
Usain Bolt went from breaking a record to spinning a record.
The sprinter completed the defense of all three Olympic titles by anchoring Jamaica's 4x100-meter relay team to a world record Saturday night.
Bolt then hotfooted it from Olympic Stadium to a party nearby in east London, where he turned DJ, entertaining the packed crowd in the early hours of Sunday morning.
It was just another case of history repeating Thursday night
Usain Bolt became the first runner to complete the 100-200 double in consecutive Olympics, blowing away another fast field in the 200 meters.
Bolt led a Jamaican 1-2-3 finish in the race, as he was followed by Yohan Blake and Warren Weir.
Bolt now stands just one race away from equaling his performance in the 2008 Games...
Toting his third gold medal of the London Games, Usain Bolt gave a little wave to 80,000 or so of his best friends in the Olympic Stadium stands.
Almost immediately, the questions started: What did that mean? Was Bolt bidding adieu for good? Will he be back? Will the world get to watch him sprint on his sport's biggest stage again in 2016?
''It was a goodbye to London...
Usain Bolt: Happy Happy, Joy Joy
Why not click the Google +1 & the retweet buttons?
**Follow us on Twitter. Subscribe, or Return to BobsBlitz.com.Follow us on Twitter. Subscribe or Return to...
Full story at Bob's Blitz ~ http://www.bobsblitz.com
The fellas talk about the greatness of Usain Bolt, fantasy football draft shenanigans and more on The Unsportsmanlike Conduct Show podcast.The post Podcast: Usain Bolt Is The Man appeared first on The Sports Fan Journal.
The question of Usain Bolt versus Michael Phelps dominated headlines in 2008. And now that the two have combined for five gold medals at the London Olympics, the debate about which is the greater Olympian has resurfaced four years later. But while you will get reasons touting each athlete's superiority -- Phelps supporters point to his 18 gold medals, while Bolt backers argue...
Justyn Warner spiked the flag down onto the track.
What was supposed to be a celebration lap for the Canadians turned into an Olympic moment Warner wished he could forget.
Moments after taking third in the 4x100-meter final on Saturday night, Canada was disqualified for stepping outside of its lane.
The bronze medal was gone. And so was a chance to be part of a medal ceremony...
Titans running back Chris Johnson, by many regarded as the fastest man in the NFL, believes he could beat world record holder and Olympic gold medalist Usain Bolt in a 40-yard dash race: “I feel like if I would have kept training for track I’d have a chance, but I play football and he runs [...]
The game was nearly as grand as the stage, in doubt until the last seconds and so important that the winning country's commander in chief was following it back home. Across town, Usain Bolt was doing in London what he did in Beijing, but for 80,203 people at Wembley Stadium and the two best women's soccer teams in the world, this was their Olympic moment.
Soccer always has...
The London Olympics may well be remembered as the event that drove home the power of social media - partly to the chagrin but mostly to the benefit of NBC, which controlled images of the games in the United States.
Twitter estimates there were more than 50 million tweets about the Olympics, at a pace of 80,000 per minute after Jamaica's Usain Bolt won the gold medal in the 200...
Usain Bolt is looking to try out with a British soccer team. What athlete that you’ve seen in the Olympics would you most like to see trying out for an American baseball team?
Santa Clara, CA
Olympians turned baseballers? I like the way you think, Ethan. And I welcome the possibilities!
I can’t help but think Michael Phelps would look good in...
Hi. It’s Friday.
Tyrann Mathieu, the Honey Badger was dismissed by LSU. That’s sort of a big deal.
David Ross is no Usain Bolt. He is more a Ryan Henning.
I like the Wire, and I like sports, so this is a great post.