Grand Prix crucial battlefield for bolt

LONDON - Triple Olympic gold medallist Usain Bolt will use this weekend's London Grand Prix to underline his credentials as the world's best sprinter.

LONDON - Triple Olympic gold medallist Usain Bolt will use this weekend's London Grand Prix to underline his credentials as the world's best sprinter.

Bolt won gold in the 100m, 200m and 4x100m relay at the Beijing Games last year and holds the 100m world record of 9,69 seconds, but America's Tyson Gay and fellow Jamaican Asafa Powell both believe they can take his crown.

Gay has already recorded the fastest 100m time this year and won gold in the 100m, 200m and 4x100m relay at the World Championships in Osaka two years ago, while Commonwealth 100m champion Powell is unbeaten over the distance at Crystal Palace having run under 10 seconds in his previous three races at the venue.

Bolt will compete against Powell in the 100m today, but Gay isn't running in that race. With Bolt sitting out the 200m, there will be no clash with Gay then either.

Though there may not be many head-to-heads between the rivals in south London, Bolt knows dominant displays in the 100m and 4x100m relay would send a message to Gay and Powell ahead of next month's World Championships in Berlin.

"I'm not sure I will be 100percent in Berlin, but if I'm 95 percent I'll be in contention," said Bolt, who is recovering from injuries suffered in a recent car crash.

"I still have a few things to get right, but if I can get everything together I should be ready for the Worlds. I'm looking forward to racing in London because I'm based here and there will be lots of Jamaican support."

Like Bolt, Gay believes the London event offers an ideal chance to fine-tune his form and lay down a marker going into the World Championships.

"I've only raced once this season in the 200m and I was really happy with that," he said. "Another 200m fits perfectly into my preparation for Berlin at this time and London will be the place to do that." - Sapa-AP

X