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Best Sprinters of All Time

  • Jesse Owens won four gold medals in 1936 Berlin Olympics
  • American sprinters dominated the sport for decades
  • Jamaican Usain Bolt defeated them and won 8 Olympic gold medals
best sprinters of all time

They were the fastest men of the world at their prime, setting up new world records and winning World Championships and Olympic Games. These talented and hard-working athletes all became world famous and made a great impact on the history of sports. Let’s see the best sprinters of all time. 

Of course, everyone knows Usain Bolt, who is still the fastest man in the world. He set up his unbelievable 100m world record of 9.58 in 2009. But there were several other great sprinters before Bolt, all reaching better times than their predecessors. From the early ages of modern athletics to today’s best sprinters, these great athletes reached huge successes during their career and became legends of the sport. 

Best sprinters of all time include American superstars

best sprinters of all time
Americans won every possible category at one point.

Sprint running events were the favorite of American athletes for a long time. They have been dominating the sport for decades until the emergence of the Jamaican sprinters. Of all US champions, probably Michael Johnson was the greatest, even though he didn’t run 100m, only 200m and 400m. But in these events he won every final he took part in. It means 4 Olympic and 8 World championships gold medals, a truly amazing performance. His world record of the 200m, which he set up in the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta, was in place for 12 years. Johnson became a television commentator after his sports career, currently he is working for BBC. 

Another legend of the sport is Carl Lewis, who managed to win in sprint and long jump as well. He won nine Olympic gold medals in these events, including the 100m in the 1984 and 1988 Olympics. Also the gold medal in long jump in four consecutive Olympic Games. He had a long and successful career between 1979 and 1996, setting up several records during these years. Online sportsbook news in the US were also reporting about his awards. Like being voted the World Athlete of the Century. 

Other great American sprinters

Justin Gatlin won the 100m in the 2004 Olympics in Athens and the 2005 World Championship before his 4-year ban for using forbidden substances. But he managed to come back and be in top form again. He clocked his best time, 9.74 in a Diamond league race in Doha in 2015. He could even beat Usain Bolt two years later in the World Championships in London, disappointing many fans who booed him at the final. Gatlin is already the oldest sprinter to win a medal in the world championships after his silver from last year. And he could continue his records if he managed to win next year in the Olympics. His odds are 8.00 to do so. 

Before Gatlin, Maurice Greene was the shining star of the US athletic team, who set up the new world record of 100m in 1999 with the time of 9.79. He was already a world champion at that time, a result he could repeat two more times.  He also won two Olympic gold medals in 2000 in Sydney. Green was struggling after with injuries but still managed to get two more medals in the following Olympic Games, finishing third in the 100m. 

A legendary sprinter from the first half of the century

In the best sprinters of all time we have to mention a champion from many years ago, who became part of world history. His name is Jesse Owens, the American sprinter who won four gold medals in the 1936 Olympic Games in Berlin. He won in 100m, 200m, long jump and with the 4x100m US relay. But it wasn’t only the fact that he won these events, but also the surroundings of the races. As Owens managed to win as a black athlete in Hitler’s Nazi Germany, destroying all myths regarding the supreme Aryan race.  

Champions from other countries

best sprinters of all time
Not only Americans are good at sprinting.

Very rarely could anyone from other countries interrupt the reign of American sprinters, but Donovan Bailey from Canada was one of them. Bailey’s biggest achievement was his victory at the 1996 Olympics, with a time only Usain could defeat 12 years later. He also won the world championships twice both in 100m and with the 4x100m relay. To tell the whole story, Bailey was born in Jamaica but he immigrated to Canada at the age of 13. 

His Jamaican origin was surely useful, as several great sprinters started to emerge from the country during the 2000s. First of them was Asafa Powell, who set a new world record for 100m in 2005 with 9.77 then another one in 2008 with 9.74. He has the most times under 10 seconds in history, with 98 times so far. Though his career was halted by injuries and doping allegations, he won his first Olympic gold in Rio with the 4x100m relay. He could finally complete his medal collection with an Olympic medal following his previous relay golds from the world championships. Powell opened the row of Jamaican sprinters, including the current world record holder. 

The fastest man in the world

Usain Bolt is not just the best sprinter of all time, but a true sports icon who is known all over the world. Looking at his runs, it all seems like a game to him. He finished with the world’s best times so easily that he even had time to look out for the clock. He won 8 Olympic gold medals in three Olympics, winning every final in the Games he took part in. Bolt also had 14 medals from world championships with 11 gold, and still holds the world records in both 100m and 200m.

Not sure who can beat these records, online gambling sites in the US are certainly hoping for an American sprinter to do it. Like their latest talent, Christian Coleman who is the current world champion. He is also the favorite to win the Olympics next year with the odds of 1.90 at 1xBet Sportsbook. But to beat Bolt’s time will be a difficult task for anyone just like to exceed his successes. 

You can discover more about 1xBet Sportsbook here.

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