TOKYO (Aftenposten): In Rio, Trayvon Bromell was carried out of the Olympic Stadium in a wheelchair. Five years later, you want to be ready to implement your big 100-meter plans. But the opening in Tokyo was rusty.
He, the greatest sprinting talent the world had seen in many years, was about to grow up. Trayvon Bromell wanted to remove the throne from the king himself, Usain Bolt. That was definitely not the case. At the beginning of the 2016 games, he had made it to the sprint finals, but he raced to the finish in last place.
Lying on the ground after completing the third stage for the USA in the 4×100 meter hurdles, he felt pain run through his Achilles tendon. In the background, Usain Bolt cheered alongside his teammates. The only one from Jamaica was still the fastest in the world. He had run his last Olympic distance and taken his eighth Olympic gold.
– At the Rio Olympics in 2016, I wanted everything to myself. I wanted to win. I wanted to be the next big one. What has happened since then has made me understand what my true purpose is in this, Trayvon Bromell said. to The Guardian before the Tokyo Games.
Held so far
He entered the games as the big favorite, but on a hot Tokyo night on Saturday, something was wrong. He had to fight. The one who had the best of the year in the world with 9.77, was not among the three that automatically ranked the most.
In the empty arena, American journalists could be seen shaking their heads in disbelief. A little surprised that he, who had been excellent all season, was about to fail.
Brommel himself had an exciting half hour until all seven heats were completed. Time had to be in the top three of those who did not automatically qualify.
He was definitely on the Rio Olympics in mind.
– It didn’t seem like I was trying at all, and the coach will be cursed for that, he said after the race in the interior concrete corridors below the Olympic stadium.
It could have ended in 2016
Trayvon Bromell’s sports career story could have ended up in Rio’s tartan deck. He was only 21 years old and should have had many good sprint years ahead of him. But when the wheelchair with Bromell came out of the spotlight, it soon disappeared from the memory of journalists who write about sports.
He tried to bet the following season, but the Achilles heel was not as it should be.
He barely ran contests in 2017. And then he disappeared again. In 2019, he started with running shoes. New injury, new training. It was not an unknown phenomenon. As a teenager he had a fracture around one knee, resulting in a broken hip in the other and then again.
If there’s one thing life has taught you about, it’s post-injury training.
There has never been any doubt about the talent of the 26-year-old from St. Petersburg, Florida. He still holds the world record for 100 meters for juniors. The trainers and experts were waiting for him to replace Usain the Great. Yes, Bolt himself has appointed Bromell as his successor.
At the same time that Bromell appears to be an ambitious athlete with a strong desire for gold, he is fully aware that he has more goals than gold.
– That gold will obviously be a great achievement. But the real gold medal is the change it will create. People will see that the boy over there, ended up in the background, but he did not give up. He continued and returned to the top. And won. This is what I want to show children around the world. All the odds may be against you, but you must not stop fighting, he said in the same Guardian interview.
Bromell, like the queen of the female sprint Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, grew up in simple circumstances. They both had single mothers who took responsibility, while the fathers were absent. Both experienced poverty and lack of money. Sometimes there was no food in the cupboard. He is well aware that he is a role model. That you can do more than just show that you are good at running fast.
After Usain Bolt resigned in 2017, the title of “the fastest man in the world” has disappeared. There is no one, and the spectacular duels are over:
- Justin Gatlin vs. Bolt.
- Asafa Powell vs. Bolt.
- Yohan Blake vs. Bolt.
The world record has not been threatened for many years.
But now a 26-year-old from Florida has the upper hand. It still has many years to go, and perhaps it will make 100 meters the biggest attraction again.
There is no doubt that the men’s 100m is no longer the mainstay of athletics at the newly built Olympic Stadium. The glory disappeared with the redemption of the retirement of the only athlete, showman and icon Usain Bolt four years ago.
Many have won the competition, but no runner has come close to the world record.
The closest has been Trayvon Bromell. When he ran a 9.77 in the American qualifying race, it was the seventh fastest time in history.
But that is history. A story you must repeat if your goal is to become the new Usain Bolt.
100-meter final on Sunday at 1:50 p.m.