Powell vows to dazzle world in 4x100m
RIO DE JANEIRO, Brazil:
For three years, he was the fastest man on the planet after breaking the 100 metre world record with times of 9.77 and 9.74 seconds.
He would eventually watch his countryman Usain Bolt lower that mark.
He teamed up with Bolt, Nesta Carter, and Michael Frater to set a 4x100m world record (37.10) at the Beijing Olympics in 2008 but was absent when a Jamaican team consisting of Bolt, Yohan Blake, Nesta Carter and Michael Frater replaced that with 37.04 at the 2011 World Championships before becoming the first team below 37 seconds with a 36.84 clocking at the 2012 Olympics in London.
Getting back to the top of the medal podium and getting himself back in the record books are now the objectives for Powell, who missed out on representing Jamaica in the 100m but said he is fully focused on doing the job in the sprint relay.
Powell, who, for the first time, is at a major championships but not among Jamaica's 100m athletes, admitted to The Gleaner that this reality felt weird, but noted that he has been working hard to ensure that he is in the best shape to help the team win a third straight 4x100m Olympic gold medal and a seventh straight win at a major championships.
"Yea, it's a different responsibility for me. It's kind of weird but I try not to think about it. I made the team, I'm at the Olympic Games and I'm going to compete," Powell said. "I'm used to competing in the 100m as well and representing the county in the event at the highest level but this time, I wasn't able to do my best because of injuries and so on. I managed to make it to the final at the trials and got into the team so that is something to be happy about."
"The relay is very important to us and I'm excited about it and I'm going out there to give my best, 100 per cent, and hopefully help to bring home the gold medal again," said Powell, who was a part of the team that won gold at last year's World Championships in Beijing.
The sprinter is convinced that the unit, which for now includes Bolt, Blake, Nickel Ashmeade, Jevaughn Minzie, and Kemar Bailey-Cole has enough firepower to trouble the record-keepers.
"We definitely have the team to do it (break the world record). Over the years, we've had great teams and we have managed to run great relays with very little training and time with each other. This year, we are spending far more time working on the relay and with us, every time we go out on the track, a world record is possible in the 4x100m because we are always prepared for it. It's just to get the stick around smoothly," said Powell.
"It would definitely be nice to get the world record. We'll try our best to do it, we just have to go out there and have fun and once we approach it relaxed as usual, it will come easier," he added.