Usain Bolt ran his fastest time of the season to win his Olympic 200 meters semi-final in 19.78 seconds as Justin Gatlin missed out on a place in the final.
Jamaica’s Bolt has already won the 100 meter and is now aiming for an eighth Olympic gold by retaining his 200meters title, but American Gatlin, who won silver behind Bolt in the 100meter final, only finished third in his semi-final.
Thirty-four year old Gatlin who was banned twice for doping offences, clocked 20.13 and failed to progress along with another big name – Yohan Blake.
The Jamaican, who won silver behind Bolt in London four years ago, has been hampered by injury over the past couple of years and faded to finish sixth in 20.37 seconds.
Meanwhile, Bolt believes he can break his world record of 19.19 and could even go under 19 seconds in the final.
“I definitely think I can try for the world record, I definitely feel that,” he said. “I need to run efficiently and get into the straight and run the perfect race.”
Bolt said he would have a better chance of achieving his goal to run under 19 seconds if he gets a high lane, adding: “If I get a lower lane it’s always harder for me to run the corner when it is tighter.”
He further added “Next year if I go to the World Championships [in London] I’m not going to double. I’m going to do the 100meter and that is it.”