The rivalry continues—sort of.
On Saturday night, Usain Bolt lost his last individual 100m final to Justin Gatlin. In a surprising upset, Gatlin defeated the eight-time Olympic champion at the IAAF World Championships. This was Bolt’s last individual race before retirement.
As soon as it was clear Gatlin had defeated the world’s fastest man, the crowd booed the American sprinter for ruining Bolt’s last hurrah. Gatlin had previously been banned on two doping offenses but was able to compete in the 2012 Olympic Games in London.
According to CNN, Gatlin was first banned for two years in 2001. After taking gold in the 2004 Summer Games, he was banned yet again in 2006 for eight years, then had it reduced to four.
When Gatlin competed in the London Games, the crowd also greeted him with boos.
But even Bolt thought the race was fair.
“It’s well-deserved. You know, I’ve said it over the years that he’s a great competitor, you know what I mean? If you don’t show up on the night, he will beat you. For me, I didn’t show up tonight.”
Gatlin even bowed down to Bolt after winning. While talking to a gaggle of reporters off the track, he said of Bolt, “A class act, man. He’s the kind of guy that he changed the sport.”