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Bolt and Powell to meet again in Stockholm

india Updated: Jul 21, 2008 19:06 IST

AP
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Usain Bolt is worried that the chilly weather could slow him down in the rematch between the world's two fastest men at the DN Galan athletics meet on Tuesday. The weather forecast calls for scattered clouds and temperatures are expected to dip into 14 degrees Celsius (57 Fahrenheit) at the time of the race.

"It's cold for me, I definitely prefer to run in warmer weather," Bolt said. "I'm from tropical Jamaica. I hope the weather changes."

A dozen sprinters in the field have personal bests of under 10 seconds in the 100 meters. Bolt set the world record of 9.72 seconds in New York on May 31, breaking Powell's mark of 9.74. They last met at Jamaica's Olympic trials in late June. Both qualified for the Beijing Games.

Powell is trying for a third straight victory at Stockholm's Olympic Stadium, where 83 world records _ more than any other site in the world _ have been broken since 1912.

Last year, Powell won the 100 at the DN Galan in 10.04. In 2006, he set the stadium record of 9.86.

Bolt hopes to break that mark.

"It would be nice to get a diamond," he said. Each athlete that sets a stadium record receives a 1-carat diamond worth US$10,000 (euro6,300).

Bolt arrived three days ahead of the meet and had no complaints when he worked out for the first time.

"The weather was good," he said. "I did some starts on another track."

The start is something he is trying to improve. "My start and my first 35 meters, if there are any improvements to make it's there," Bolt said.

Tuesday's race will only be the sixth at 100 meters for the 21-year-old Bolt, whose coach Glen Mills wanted him to focus on the 200 and 400 meters early in his career.

Bolt, who stands 1.96 meters (6-foot-5) and is one of the tallest sprinters around, competed once before at Olympic Stadium. "I ran in a relay two years ago, but this is my first individual race here," he said. "The track is good. I'm looking forward to it."

Others entered in the 100 include Derrick Atkins of the Bahamas, who finished third behind American Tyson Gay and Powell in last year's World Championships, and defending Olympic 200-meter champion Shawn Crawford of the United States.

Olympic and world champion Jeremy Wariner of the United States, who earned a diamond when he broke the stadium record in the 400 last year, heads the field in the one-lap race.

Among other Olympic champions competing are Yelena Isinbayeva of Russia (women's pole vault) and Swedes Christian Olsson (men's triple jump), Stefan Holm (men's high jump) and Carolina Kluft (heptathlon).

Olsson is making a comeback after a long injury break. Kluft, who has quit the heptathlon, will compete in the long jump.