Usain Bolt Says He Wants to Take on a Bigger Role in Track and Field
Six years after retiring from his sport in 2017, Usain Bolt wants to make a positive impact on track and field. In an interview with Reuters, the eight-time Olympic gold medalist shared that he hopes to revitalise the running world with his world-famous charisma.
In the years since he stopped competing professionally, Bolt, now 36, has leaned into his personal life. “I spend my time doing a lot of family things, when it comes to track and field, not as much as I would want to, but I still try and stay in touch with what is going on,” he told Reuters.
Now, he’s reportedly in talks with World Athletics (track and field’s governing body) to find a pathway back to the sport. “I’m still waiting on a position from [World Athletics], I’ve reached out to them and let them know I would love to make a bigger impact in sports, as long as they want me to,” he said in the interview. “We’ve been in talks but we’ll have to wait and see what comes around.”
Bolt said he believes that running could use the lightheartedness he brought to every starting line. “It’s going to be a process. After me, it kind of went down because of who I was as a person and how big my personality was,” he said. However, he did note that people like Olympic Bronze medalist Noah Lyles have continued the tradition of bringing joy and energy to the sport.
“But I think over time it will be better. I think young athletes are coming up and I see a few personalities that are needed in sport, hopefully in the upcoming years it will change,” he said to Reuters. “Hopefully I can play a part and help the sport to grow.”
Bolt noted that he’s looking forward to the upcoming Paris Olympic Games in 2024, and he’s also been impressed by some of his Jamaican compatriots, including two young sprint stars — Oblique Seville and Ackeem Blake — as well as the timeless Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce. “I follow Shelly a lot because we came through the same era, so to see her continue sprinting and coming back from having a child, that’s impressive,” Bolt said.