Usain Bolt is going for more gold in the 200m.
Usain Bolt is going for more gold in the 200m. Shaun Botterill

RIO 2016: Bolt's greatest 200m runs

USAIN Bolt is running for more Olympics history on Thursday and Friday as he goes in the Olympics 200m semi-finals and finals.

Bolt is aiming for an unprecedented third straight gold over the distance, his favourite event.

Bolt cruised into Thursday semi-final (11.08am) in a time of 20.28 seconds.

If he wins again he will also become the first man to win the 100m and 200m at three consecutive Games.

Here we take a look at some of his greatest 200m runs.


Olympic final, Beijing 2008

Most experts said that the great Michael Johnson's world record of 19.32 seconds set at the Olympics in Atlanta in 1996 would never be beaten.

But those experts had not factored Bolt into the equation. The Jamaican had been criticised for apparent showboating when winning the 100m earlier in the Games, but there was none of the chest-thumping antics here.

Bolt had the race wrapped up with 50m left but this time he drove home all the way and ducked under Johnson's time to set a new mark of 19.30. His winning time was 0.66 seconds faster than the rest of the field, an incredible margin in sprint events.


World championship final, Berlin 2009

Bolt was supposed to be tired after a tough schedule but his run in the final of the world championships was arguably his best performance.

The Jamaican flew out of the blocks to lead by a couple of metres going round the bend and as the stagger unwound down the back straight, he pulled away from a world-class field to win by five metres.

His time of 19.19 was scarcely believable and smashed his own world record set in Beijing.


World championships, Daegu 2011

A false start had cost Bolt the 100m title, so some might have expected a slow start from the defending champion.

But he flew out of the blocks in lane three to lead by the bend.

He took that superbly before cruising home in 19.4 seconds, the sixth-fastest run of all time.


Olympic final, London 2012

Bolt had been beaten by fellow Jamaican Yohan Blake in the last race before the Olympics.

Jamaican sprinters were at their peak in London and most expected them to dominate but some were questioning Bolt's ability to complete the double-double at the Games after winning both sprint titles in Beijing.

As it turned out, Blake did threaten but Bolt was again too good, matching Johnson's 19.32 in Atlanta to lead a Jamaican clean sweep of the medals.

As he crossed the line, Bolt put his finger to his lips as if to silence his critics but there could be none after becoming the first man in history to win golds in the 100m and 200m at consecutive Games.

Blake won silver and Warren Weir bronze.

Bolt has seven of the top 13 fastest 200m races of all-time. Compatriot Yohan Blake, who has the second fastest time (19.26), has three of the top 13 times. Americans Michael Johnson (19.32), Walter Dix (19.53) and Justin Gatlin (19.57) are the only other runners in the top 13 times.  

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