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News > Sport

Honors Party Planned as Jamaica Bids Goodbye to Bolt

  • Usain Bolt celebrating the Men's 4x100m Relay Final Win at the Rio Olympics.

    Usain Bolt celebrating the Men's 4x100m Relay Final Win at the Rio Olympics. | Photo: Reuters

Published 9 June 2017

The triple double Olympic winner will be a hard act for any track and field athlete to follow.

Legendary sprinter Usain Bolt is preparing to bid farewell when he takes to the track for the final time on his home island of Jamaica on Saturday.

Fittingly it will be for the club that discovered and nurtured his talent, Racers T&F Club Jamaica during their annual grand prix.


Bolt Treasured by Jamaicans Not Only for His Speed

And a massive celebration has been organized for the star athlete.

Saturday's race will be a ceremonial one for Bolt.

He will take part in a special, "Salute to a Legend" 100m sprint against teammates Michael Frater, Asafa Powell, and Nesta Carter, as well us CARICOM competitors Daniel Bailey from Antigua and the Barbadian Ramon Gittens.

As for the athlete himself, he said he always gives his best, but there's no real motivation for him to try and break his own records.

He says he runs for his fellow Jamaicans and if any record is to be broken, it will be because his fans have asked for it, “For me, I live to make my country proud. When I was growing up, my role models were Don Quarrie, Herb McKenley. I watched these guys dominate and work hard (to) make their country proud. I just wanted to be like them.”

Tickets to Saturday's event are hard to come by, Jamaicans are planning to pack out the stadium.

Bolt said, "It's gonna be a great reception. I'm home, the amount of people that called me to get tickets (he laughs), I know the stadium's gonna be full, so I know it's gonna be high energy, and I know it's gonna be just one big party. It's going to be emotional, but I'm definitely looking forward to it."

Bolt Makes Olympic History

Dennis Gordon, a vice-president at Racers, told the Jamaica Observer that Bolt needed a truly unique send off.

“What we have done is put together a medley of songs which speaks best to the different stages and accomplishments of this great Jamaican athlete, from his days at Boys' and Girls' Champs to his exploits at the Olympic level,” he said.

Freddie McGregor's “Born A Winner” will herald Bolt's arrival to the stadium. Dennis Brown's “Here I Come” will play as he makes his way, through a guard of honour, onto the field to greet his fans.

A concert featuring some of the Jamaica's biggest dancehall artists is also planned, but Mr. Gordon wanted to keep some of the show to himself, but he said the sprinter would be in for a surprise.

The holder of the triple double, because he won gold in both the 100m and 200m in three consecutive Olympic Games, Bolt will be a hard act for any track and field athlete to follow.

And Saturday's race, and celebration is the last before he takes off his running shoes for good in August.

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