'Only a fool wouldn't question Bolt's times' - American legend stands by comments made about Jamaican sprint king

By Sports Desk February 26, 2019
Olympic legends Usain Bolt and Carl Lewis have not always seen eye to eye. Olympic legends Usain Bolt and Carl Lewis have not always seen eye to eye.

United States track and field legend Carl Lewis has insisted that it would be foolish not to question the records set by recently retired Jamaican sprint king Usain Bolt but claims it was never anything personal.

The 57-year-old Lewis, a nine-time Olympic gold medallist, sparked a firestorm in 2008 when he suggested that the spectacular feats accomplished by Bolt might have been with the aim of performance-enhancing drugs.  Lewis pointed to major reductions in the sprinter’s times over 100m an event he first competed in, in 2007.  In his youth, Bolt became the first junior sprinter to run the 200m in under twenty seconds.

Lewis’ criticism sparked the ire of fans worldwide, many turning to accused him of envy.  The American’s cynical point of view did not escape Bolt himself who insisted he had lost all respect for the former sprinter. 

In a recent interview on ‘Undeniable with Dan Patrick’, however, Lewis stood by the controversial comments but insists the issue was never personal and spoke to the integrity of the sport.

“My thing was I didn’t accuse anyone of anything but what I said is that you have to question if someone drops that fast like that.  If you don’t then you are crazy or a fool or something, whatever I said,” Lewis said in the interview to be aired on A&T Audience Network.

“My issue with drugs has always been the brand.  Being a sport that people think is on drugs is bad for the brand.  I didn’t trust it (Bolt’s times) so I put it out there.  People asked me, ‘What are you saying?’, I already said what I said and there is nothing to change. I stand by it,” he added.

The 32-year-old Bolt still holds the world records for both the 100m and 200m sprints, blistering marks of 9.58 and 19.19 set in 2009 that have seemed untouchable for the past several years.

“Of course, I questioned that.  It doesn’t mean I’m saying he is on it (drugs) but we should question it…they should question anyone that does that kind of drop.  I didn’t say anywhere that he was on it.  I said we should question it because if you don’t it’s ridiculous.”

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