Spoken by Jamaican sprint legend Usain Bolt as he gave his final pre-championship press call yesterday evening, the 11-time world champion was responding to MC Colin Jackson’s question of how he expects to feel upon waking up this coming Sunday morning, at which point his battles with the 100m will be consigned to history.
In front of a scrum of global media that are now the familiar accompaniment to anything involving the Jamaican and a microphone, Bolt, aiming to win his fourth 100m before forming one quarter of the Jamaican 4x100m relay team, was in typically confident spirits as he prepares for his swansong championships.
Having overcome early-season struggles, Bolt bounced off the laid-back atmosphere of the room to bat back questions about whether or not he is still quick enough to strike 100m gold against some of the world’s fleet-footed sprinters who have shown well in 2017.
“Yes, without a doubt – you guys know that if I show up for a championship, I’m fully confident and ready to go. My coach is confident and happy. I’m confident in my ability because I know when I go out there, I’m ready to go, 100%.”
On being identified as supposedly fragile by some of his sprint rivals, he added: “For some reason I am the underdog – this is what my team keep telling me once more. But I am confident in my abilities, always.”
“The last 100m race I ran was a 9.95, which shows I am going in the right direction. It is all about who can keep their nerve – I have been here many times and I know I am ready. It is go time.”
With the days ticking away until the beginning of the championships – the first of which to be held in the UK – Bolt took the time to laud the British crowd as “the best I’ve ever competed in front of”, adding “I would definitely rank them number one” as he reminisced on the crowds seen at the former Olympic Stadium five years ago.
Now, with the talking done from the Jamaican’s camp, all attention turns to Friday night’s curtain raiser, an evening which promises to be nothing short of electric inside the London Stadium.