The hype and marketing behind the “fastest man in the world”:

It’s no surprise that every sports meeting in which he participates is organized around him. When he ran in Ostrava in the spring, there were posters featuring Bolt all over the Czech city, the stadium was sold out weeks ahead and there were young blonde girls in the stands who had painted the Jamaican national colors on their cheeks.

‘Usain?’ the stadium announcer shouted.

‘Bolt!’ the crowd shouted back. And there were still three hours to go before the 100-meter race.

The other athletes were mere accessories, Olympic and world champions playing the opening act for the fastest man in the world. The journalists were interested in only two other athletes. One was Oscar Pistorius, who is running the 400-meter race on prosthetic lower legs, and the other was 800-meter runner Caster Semenya who, for a time, was rumored to be a man.

“Myths, Legends and the Making of Usain Bolt.” — Alexander Osang, Spiegel Online

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