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On Saturday, June 10, Usain Bolt will compete in his final meet on home soil in the 100 meters at the Racers Grand Prix Jamaica in Kingston.
The eight time Olympic champion has publicly deemed the 2017 IAAF season as his last, with the two year old meet serving as the first of three competitions (Ostrava, Czech Republic on June 28; Monaco on July 21) he has on his schedule in this season aside from the London World Championships. He sat down with meet organizers this week to discuss his sentiments and plans for the future.
“It’s always good to compete in front of my home crowd… since it’s my last time, it will be emotional” said Bolt.
“I know it will be a good crowd, people will come out to support, so I am excited to just to see and feel the atmosphere for the last time; so, I’m looking forward to it”.
Bolt is admittedly still undecided over future plans, but one thing he is certain of, is that he wants to remain involved in the sport.
“There’s many…many directions to go I haven’t really decided……..one thing I know I would like want to try to stay as close as possible to track and field.”
One avenue is through his charity: Usain Bolt Foundation (UBF), an organization founded in 2010 that has been at the forefront of much philanthropic work throughout Jamaica – from educational investments to various health and humanitarian crises. Most notable of these is the multi-purpose youth athletic facility that was installed in Trelawny on the grounds of Bolt’s childhood community of Sherwood Content.
“I want to give back, whether through sponsorship, as a mentor, or even assisting my coach (Glen Mills). ”
He put special emphasis on mentorship and the importance of quality leadership in the community. He urged up and coming leaders in athletics and beyond to ” continue to stay strong and stay focused and always remember that people look up to you”. Bolt continued “I always tell the athletes to set a good example for the younger ones”.
After reflecting on his role models, Bolt stated, “I saw the motivation and poise that they had and the drive that they had so I wanted to do my best and help my country”.
He ended “hopefully the young ones can grow up and follow in my footsteps”.
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The 2017 JN Racers Grand Prix will be held on June 10 at the National Stadium in Kingston.