Bolt-mania hits Olympics

LONDON, ENGLAND - AUGUST 09: Usain Bolt of Jamaica celebrates after winning gold in the Men's 200m Final on Day 13 of the London 2012 Olympic Games at Olympic Stadium on August 9, 2012 in London, England. (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)
Clive Brunskill

(CBS News) LONDON - At the Jamaica House at the Olympics Thursday, people celebrated the historic racing feat of their countryman Usain Bolt by dancing to and singing Bob Marley's hit song, "One Love."

Not only has there never been a better time to be Jamaican but, judging by the party that formed to watch Bolt run the 200 meters Thursday night, everybody's a Jamaican these days.

Everybody's doing "the Bolt," a dance move named after sprinter, who was seeking to cement his place in history and become what he unabashedly called a legend by becoming the first man in Olympic history to win the 100 and 200 meter races in two straight Games.

Everybody at the party knew exactly what was going to happen. One Jamaican woman predicted a gold in the 200 for Bolt, a silver for another of her countrymen, and possibly a bronze, as well.

The crowd cheered loudly as the race began. Sometimes a race is so good, it's almost as much fun to watch the crowd watching it as it is to watch the race itself. In this case, 19.32 seconds of ecstasy. A crescendo not just of joy, but of something like love. And Jamaicans indeed swept the top three spots in the race.

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It was no doubt exciting for the other two sprinters, Yohan Blake and Warren Weir, as well. But this was all about one man, who came into these Games saying he was hurt -- only running at 95 percent. That's still several percent better than anybody else.

After his win in the 200, Bolt said, "This is what I came here for and I got it. I'm so happy, I'm so happy I can't explain. I came out here, a lot of people were doubting, me but I just showed the world that I am the best. No matter what ... I always pull through."

One love, one heart. The whole world was together and feeling alright.

"Even Queen Elizabeth loves Bolt!" one reveler exclaimed. "Everybody loves Bolt!"

Bolt is finally the legend he wanted to be. Not only that, he's a living legend.

  • Mark Phillips

    Mark Phillips is CBS News senior foreign correspondent, based in London.