Lewis predicts 'tremendous' sprint competition in Paris Olympics

The American Olympic icon said he's pleased to see athletes from a range of nations challenging in the sprints at the highest level

By AFP

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Legendary American athlete Carl Lewis. — AFP
Legendary American athlete Carl Lewis. — AFP

Published: Sun 21 Apr 2024, 3:17 PM

Nine-time Olympic gold medallist Carl Lewis is looking forward to "tremendous" sprint competition at the Paris Olympics, where he expects organisers to pull out all the stops.

"I think Paris is going to be fabulous, incredible," Lewis said Saturday at the Mt. SAC Relays east of Los Angeles.


"It's a wonderful country. It's a beautiful city. And I know they're going to integrate the culture and the ideas and being the 100th anniversary (of the 1924 Paris Games), I think it's going to be an absolutely fabulous Olympics."

Lewis, who established himself as an Olympic force when he won 100m, 200m, long jump and 4x100m relay gold at the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics and earned his final Olympic gold in Atlanta in 1996, said he's pleased to see athletes from a range of nations challenging in the sprints at the highest level.


"It's their time and I love it," the 62-year-old said of the young athletes on the rise now. "I work at the University of Houston. So I'm working with athletes. I'm really happy to see the kids running hard, running well. I"m glad to see the sprints are more global, there are more athletes from around the world. I think it makes it better.

"And I think it's going to be tremendous competition," added Lewis, who noted that since Jamaican great Usain Bolt won back to back world titles in 2013 and 2015 four different men had won the 100m world title.

Noah Lyles became the latest to join that list last year with his triumph in Budapest. Lewis said that makes him the early favourite for Paris -- but added it's too early in the season to make any hard predictions.

"I'm glad to see the sprints are more global, there are more people from around the world," Lewis said. "I think it makes it better and I think it's going to be tremendous competition."

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