Doping is going to set us back, says Bolt

Jamaican World champ emphasises he is clean

Doping is going to set us back, says Bolt

Usain Bolt will again fly the flag for drug-free athletics at this weekend's London Diamond League meeting after a news conference where the multi-titled Jamaican was bombarded with questions about the sport's latest doping scandals.

Any hopes Bolt had that his appearance in London would be a celebration of his Olympic glories in the same stadium 12 months ago were dispelled by the first question he faced on Thursday.

Bolt will race the 100M in Friday's Diamond League meeting and return on Saturday for a 4x100M relay yet the number one topic was the recent positive dope tests on his fellow Jamaicans Asafa Powell and Sherone Simpson as well as American Tyson Gay, the fastest man over 100M this year.

"I think there are a lot of details that are still to be discussed, a lot of things that haven't been said so I'm just waiting to see what happens," Bolt told a packed room in a London hotel.

"In life things happen and people make mistakes but as an athlete you have to be very careful and aware, it's hard but that's why you have a team to have to help you out with these things," Bolt added, saying he had spoken briefly with former world record holder Powell and told him to 'stay strong'.

Asked if the public could trust him, Bolt rolled his eyes and set about his now familiar refrain.

"I was hoping that question would come later in the day," he said. "How long have you been following Usain Bolt — since 2008 maybe?

"If you'd been following me from 2002 you would know I've been doing phenomenal things since I was 15.

"I was the youngest person to win the world juniors at 15, I set a world youth junior record at 17, I've broken records in every race I've ever done so I've proven myself. You could say I'm underperforming right now!

"I was made to inspire people and to run I was given a gift and that's what I do. I'm going to continue running and using my talent and help the sport.

"I have vitamins that I take, every athlete does, but I don't really take supplements," he said.

"I work hard every day go out with one focus and don't worry about other athletes.
"I'm not going to stress about it (doping). I know I am clean and I just want to improve the sport and that is what I am going to do."

Bolt agreed that the dope issue was a setback. "Definitely it's going to set us back a little bit but I can't focus on this I still have the worlds ahead of me and everyone is stepping up their game," he said.

Bolt’s best time of the year in the 100M so far is 9.94 seconds - pedestrian alongside his 2009 world record of 9.58 - but he has looked sharper over 200M where his 19.73 is world-leading.

He says he is unconcerned as he seeks to regain the 100M title he lost to Yohan Blake in 2011 after he was disqualified for false-starting in the final.

"I could have run faster at the national trials, the main aim was to go there and qualify," he said.

"I've had three weeks of solid training, technique work, speed endurance, working on my core. I'm feeling in great shape.

"This year I wanted to try to break a world record but its been an up and down season. Hopefully tomorrow will put me on the right path to run fast at the worlds."

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