At Rio he is out to make history by being the first athlete to win three gold medals at three Olympics. The Jamaican superstar turns 30 on the day of the closing ceremony and this will be his last Games.
In London 2012 he was the undoubted star, and now bidders have the chance to own a remarkable piece of Olympics memorabilia from that event thanks to auctioneer Graham Budd.
Seventeen pieces of track from the Olympic stadium, all about a metre square, are on offer in a timed auction ending on August 21. Budd says: “They comprise the complete set of nine lane numbers. These were located at the termination of the sprint track beyond the 100m and 110m hurdles starts.”
And the star lot is lane 7, as Usain Bolt won both his 100m and 200m gold medals from this lane (estimated at £10,000-15,000). Then there are start lines for the 110m hurdles, 200m (x3), 400m, 4 x 100m relay (x2) & 800m (x2).
Also, there are two sections from the long/triple jump runway – and finally a gigantic track covering inscribed London 2012 which was located one side of the medals podium.
Budd says: “They’re being sold as is, but the consignor for an additional fee can offer a framing/presentation service.”
Olympic 2012 legacy
The sale is part of the ‘legacy initiatives’ post 2012, notably for the Olympic stadium which is now the home of West Ham United FC (their first Premier League home game kicks off on August 21).
Each lot comes sold with a certificate of authenticity issued by the London Legacy Development Corporation (LLDC) and the Mayor of Newham.
Generic pieces of the track are also being sold online at london2012track.com. Such sales are proving “highly successful”, says Budd, who adds that no other Olympic track sections have been sold in this way, providing a unique opportunity for buyers.
Who does he think will be the main bidders? He says: “Olympic collectors, but also I feel people that attended the Games and have very fond memories of that glorious summer.”
Budd gained 25 years’ experience in the auction business working for Sotheby’s, where he was a deputy director and head of sporting memorabilia. He now runs his own auction house and holds live sales at Sotheby’s New Bond Street saleroom.