BEIJING Hard work. Having fun. A fast track.
Simple as could be, that's Usain Bolt explanation for his unprecedented, breakout performance at the Beijing Olympics.
"I've been tested four times (in China), before I even started running. These guys took urine tests and blood tests. After every event final, I've been tested," the Jamaican said Saturday, one of his three gold medals dangling from a red ribbon around his neck. "I've been tested out of competition so many times I lost track."
Bolt broke world records in winning the 100 meters (9.69 seconds), 200 meters (19.30) and 400-meter relay (37.10), something no man had done at an Olympics. None of the finals was even close, and Bolt began his celebration in the dash before it was done, stretching out his arms with palms up, then slapping his chest.
"I came out here prepared," he said. "I worked hard that's all I can say. ... I worked hard to get here. It wasn't easy at all. It may look easy, but it was hard."
Bolt wasn't merely good he was stunning. Too good to be true?
Don Anderson, head of Jamaica's Beijing delegation, said about half the country's athletes had been drug-tested since arriving in China.
"Therefore, all the records that have been broken by Usain Bolt and all the gold medals that have been won by (other Jamaicans) have come after extensive testing" by the International Olympic Committee, the World Anti-Doping Agency and the International Association of Athletics Federations, Anderson said. "That, as far as I am concerned, is more than adequate proof."
Overall, Jamaica won five of the six golds, along with two silvers and a bronze, in the sprinting events.
"What I think almost amuses us is why some people in the world don't feel that others can be that good. We have been good for a very long time," said Mike Fennell, president of the Jamaica Olympic Association. "We have some marvelous talent here and wouldn't want anybody to suggest at all that this is not pure, raw talent that has been properly trained and properly coached and properly presented and reaping the rewards of all that hard work."
The head of track and field's governing body said Saturday that Bolt's flashy personality and outsize performances make him exactly the right man to help the sport recover from a spate of doping scandals that have resulted in medals being stripped, records being revoked and a decrease in popularity.
"He is good and great for our sport," IAAF president Lamine Diack said. "He can help to build up our sport."
Diack also disagreed with IOC president Jacques Rogge, who said Thursday that Bolt should have cut out the "look at me" hotdogging at the end of the 100 final. Rogge also chastised Bolt for not shaking hands with the men he beat.
"I did not mind," Diack said.
Asked about Rogge's comments, Bolt said he spoke to opponents about his showboating, "and most of them were OK with it."
"I won't change that. And I don't see any problem with it, because people enjoy watching me," Bolt said. "I'll stay the way I am. That's my personality."
Now it's off to less-important meets for Bolt, who said he'll run in Zurich and Lausanne, Switzerland, and Brussels, Belgium, before calling it a season. European meet organizers have offered more than $100,000 should Bolt win his races in new record times.
Other athletes can take some solace in this: Bolt said he definitely won't add the long jump to his repertoire, a la Carl Lewis, and might only occasionally run the 400 meters, the race his coach tried to steer him to instead of the 100.
Diack said he ranks Bolt's Olympics above Lewis' four golds at the 1984 Los Angeles Games the 100, 200, 400 relay and long jump because Lewis only broke one world record, in the relay.
"I'll still train hard and just work hard to stay on top," Bolt said, "because I'm on top now and I want to try to stay there as long as I can."