14th April, 2020
Retired Jamaican track star Usain Bolt set Twitter on fire Monday after he posted a picture of him outstripping his rivals at the Beijing Olympics.
The picture has the cheeky caption: “social distancing”.
Bolt’s post, featuring a picture by AFP photographer Nicolas Asfouri of the 2008 Olympics 100m final, blew up on social media.
It drew over 544,000 likes and 96,000 retweets. There were over 2000 comments.
— Usain St. Leo Bolt (@usainbolt) April 13, 2020
It showed the Jamaican crossing the finish line at the Bird’s Nest stadium in a then-world record time of 9.69sec.
He glanced round from lane four as his despairing competitors trail two paces behind.
“Savage”, commented one Twitter user, while New York Times journalist Christopher Clarey posted another picture of Bolt out in front on his own, captioned “self isolation”.
Bolt’s chest-thumping celebration in Beijing added to a legend that grew further when he won the 200m in another world-record time.
He retired in 2017 with eight Olympic gold medals and the current 100m mark of 9.58sec, set in 2009.
Bolt, 33, has been encouraging Jamaicans to self-isolate during the coronavirus pandemic.
He posted videos of himself exercising at home and juggling footballs with a friend.
He also helped promote a major fundraiser, Telethon Jamaica and donated $500,000.
After retiring from athletics, Bolt, a Manchester United fan, attempted to launch a career in football.
He had a trial with Australia’s Central Coast Mariners before contract talks failed.