Chambers eyes Bolt

The 34-year-old takes on the world’s fastest man for the first time in an individual race outside of a major championship when they meet at the Golden Spike meeting in Ostrava.

The Jamaican leads the rankings this year with 9.82 seconds, while Chambers’ only outing over the distance so far resulted in a off-the-pace clocking of 10.52secs.

That came in Puerto Rico earlier this month in his first race since the court ruling which declared the former drug cheat eligible to compete for Great Britain at London 2012 – although he clocked a 100m split of 10.26s in a straight 150m race in Manchester last Sunday.

He will expect to go quicker against the Olympic champion and world record holder in the Czech Republic and is relishing the chance to test himself at a high-profile grand prix meeting after so long in the wilderness.


“No matter what happens, whenever you get a chance to race against Usain you can only get the best out of yourself,” explained Chambers.

“He’s in 9.82 form and he’s probably going to get faster and faster so I’ve just got to do my best to keep close to him.”

Chambers, who served a two-year suspension after testing positive for a banned steroid in 2003 and was subsequently snubbed for years by the major meetings, admitted a sub-10 time “would be nice”.

The Olympic ‘A’ qualifying standard of 10.18 is his first target, though, and he feels racing athletes of the calibre of Bolt will be crucial to his preparation for the summer showpiece.


“It’s going to make a massive difference because compared to the level of competition I’ve been running against for the last few years, the quality is higher,” the Londoner said.

“In order to beat the best you’ve got to compete against the best in the world and those opportunities weren’t available to me.

“Now that they are, I’ve automatically got to get myself into a different mindset.

“I’m going to be going up against runners who are effectively sub-9.8 runners and I haven’t been in that calibre for a long time.”

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