Noah Lyles completes 100/200m double, following in Usain Bolt’s footsteps

American Noah Lyles (Kirill Kudryavtsev) surrounded by the media after winning the men's 200m final at the World Athletics Championships in Budapest, August 25, 2023

American Noah Lyles (Kirill Kudryavtsev) surrounded by the media after winning the men’s 200m final at the World Athletics Championships in Budapest, August 25, 2023

After his 100m stunt last week, American Noah Lyles was crowned 200m world champion for the third time in a row in Budapest on Friday, confirming more than the double since Usain Bolt in 2015.

The bolometer has never been so high since the Jamaican legend retired in 2017. Showman Noah Lyles, who dreams of breaking the boundaries of his sport, took a step in the right direction with a stunning 100/200m double at the World Championships.

The 26-year-old Floridian made it to the finals in the second half of the race, clocking 19 s 52 (-0.2 m/s) ahead of compatriot Arionne Knighton (19.75) and Batswana Letsile Tebogo (19.81), 100 m (Bronze) ) already a medalist in

In early June, Lyles and Bolt met each other in Kingston, with the Jamaican Bolt whispering a few words in his future successor’s ear: “You’re a good man, glad to see you. Our sport needs that.” , we need it” personality.”

“Usain Bolt did it (the double), and the fact that he spoke to me to tell me that he follows me and respects me, that’s incredible,” Lyles said at a press conference.

“This double represents a lot of work. I said a lot that there was no pressure on me, but obviously there was pressure. The 100m was the most fun. The 200m is where I put my biggest performance, Having won my first two world titles, it was personal.”

A rich and complex personality, happy-go-lucky singer, dancer or chamberlain Noah Lyles was never afraid to reveal his intimacy to the world.

A few weeks ago, the American channel NBC dedicated a one-and-a-half-hour long documentary to him, specifically a return to his youth, which Lyles hopes will take place over several seasons.

– To “fight” on the track –

Born in Gainesville (Florida) on July 18, 1997, he spent considerable time in the hospital as a child for treatment of his asthma, before being relieved by a tonsil and adenoid operation at the age of six.

His parents, both former athletes, divorced when he was 13: he moved with his brother to live with his mother, and his older sister to live with his father.

Dyslexic and prone to attention disorders, he has trouble at school where he repeats his “first grade”, which is equivalent to the preparatory course.

“I fought my whole life. To get out of the hospital after I was born, then to get out of school, to find my way, with my dyslexia and my attention deficit disorder. Now I’m fighting on the track. I am”, he said. Before entering the race in Budapest.

This diamond in the rough burst onto the scene in 2018 before winning the title for the first time at the 2019 Worlds.

But the global COVID-19 pandemic is taking a toll on their morale and Lyles has to settle for a bronze medal at the 2021 Tokyo Olympics. Describing his therapy with a psychotherapist, he says, “Tokyo was a test for my mental health, which I overcame. I showed that I could be thrown into a storm of dark thoughts and come out of it. May go.”

– manga hero –

Solar, Lyles dazzles with his wide smile, and loves to showcase his talents and interests, elevating pop culture references, especially to the world of manga, which he swallows, whether on paper or animated.

In Budapest, his on-camera racing presentation is all about snapping his fingers like the popular manga character Tokyo Ghoul. A few hours before the 200 m final, he posted on “X” (formerly Twitter) that it was “time for Genki Dama”, a smashing attack by the manga reference Dragon Ball hero, Son Goku.

Overpowered, he was on track: in the 200m, as he calls it his “kingdom”, he is undefeated for two years and is in the final for the 2021 Tokyo Olympics.

There’s only one thing he’s lacking to get closer to Master Bolt: seizing his world records (9.58 over 100m, 19.19 over 200m), which still stand untouched.


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