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Rodney Hinds pays tribute to Usain Bolt

RESPECT: Sports Editor Rodney Hinds speaks at last Sunday's (July 16) gala in honour of Usain Bolt and coach Glen Mills (image credit: Ken Passley)

AT THE prestigious charity dinner and auction in honour of Usain Bolt, Glen Mills and Racers Track Club, 'The Voice’s' sports editor Rodney Hinds shared a few kind words to the legendary honouree.

“As a youngster in the rural enclave of Trelawny, Jamaica, Usain fell in love and played the sport of cricket,” began Hinds.

“He still claims to be a good cricketer. Bolt's sports master at the time, observing his speed on the pitch, advised him to consider track and field. Usain put away his cricket bat, never looked back and the sprinting world as we knew it would be changed forever.

“Bolt's entry in track and field, and his rise to prominence in the 2002 World Junior Championships, in front of a vibrant home crowd in Kingston at the age of 15, made him the youngest junior gold medalist ever. One year later, he broke the world youth 200 m record at the World Youth Championship in Sherbrooke, Canada.”

HONOUR: From left - Paulette Simpson, JN Bank's Leon Mitchell and Usain Bolt (image credit: Ken Passley)

“The medals and records kept coming, but not before track and field's golden boy was taken through the testing fire of injuries and doubts,” he said.

“One must lose in order to win – those were the words he was taught by his influential coach Glen Mills.

“Less than ideal runs in the 2004 Olympic Games and 2005 World Championships, formed a crucial part of his eduction. Double silver at the 2007 World Championships prepared him for glorious ascension to the top of the sport.

PRIDE: Bolt looking at his citation (image credit: Ken Passley)

“Usain subsequently wrote a new page in spiriting history at the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games in China, when he became the first and only athlete to topple three Olympic and world records at the same games."

Following the speech, Bolt was awarded with a citation from Hinds, before the all important auction kicked-off.

CELEBRATION: From left - Usain Bolt, Paulette Simpson, Glen Mills, and JN Bank's Leon Mitchell (image credit:
Ken Passley)

From the successful event, over £40,000 was raised for Racers Track Club, in support of upcoming Jamaican athletes. Some of the items that went for sale included Bolt’s spikes to tickets for his 100m final.

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