Usain Bolt has warned the next generation of Jamaican sprinters they have to display the same insatiable desire for greatness he did if they are to follow in his footsteps.
Bolt bade a final farewell to the sport he has ruled for the past nine years with an emotional lap of honour at the end of the World Championships in London on Sunday.
Warmth poured down from the packed stands, but he admitted he had endured a ‘rough’ send-off on the track, having to settle for bronze in the 100 metres and then pulling up injured in his very last race, the 4x100m relay.
The 30-year-old’s travails were an experience shared by many of his compatriots.
Jamaica finished the 10 days of competition with just one gold medal, courtesy of Omar McLeod in the 110m hurdles.
In the men’s and women’s 100m, 200m and 4x100m relays they won just two bronze medals in total, the women’s sprint quartet claiming the other place on the podium. There was no Jamaican representation at all in the final of either the men’s or women’s 200m.
At the Rio Olympics last year those six sprint events produced five golds and one silver.
Bolt denied it was a sign Jamaican sprinting was on the wane, but accepted his were big shoes to fill.