Frostbite will not dampen Gatlin

Gatlin, who is in his second year back following a four-year doping suspension, developed the condition recently in steamy Florida of all places, he told a news conference ahead of Saturday's opening of the world championships.

“There is a cryo (cryotherapy) chamber (where he trains) and I went in there on a hot day and had socks on and the socks were wet from sweat,” Gatlin said.

“I was only in there for two minutes, but for some reason the socks froze to my ankles.”
For a while, ‘it felt like my feet were on fire.... and it hurt to walk’, Gatlin said of the frostbite. Now almost fully recovered, Gatlin is preparing for his first World Championships since winning the sprint double in Helsinki six years ago but will only compete in the 100 metres and sprint relay in South Korea.

While the American was unable to race following a 2006 positive doping test for the banned steroid testosterone, Jamaican Usain Bolt emerged as the king of sprinting with times Gatlin could only dream of in his pre-suspension days.

“He is a pioneer,” Gatlin said. “He is track and field at this time.” But Gatlin, given his second chance at athletics, believes there is hope he too could climb on the podium in Daegu alongside the lanky Jamaican. “When it comes to championships, it is totally different from running one race... and a lot of people do not understand that,” said the 2004 Olympic champion, who has a legal personal best of 9.85 seconds in the 100 metres.

Bolt set his world record time of 9.58 seconds at the last championships in Berlin two years ago, where he repeated his triple gold-medal winning feat of the Beijing Olympics in 2008.
Reuters

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