Rio 2016: Usain Bolt is "the greatest" after winning his third gold of the Games

The Jamaican has now won nine Olympic gold medals in the nine events he has participated in across his career.

Rio 2016: Usain Bolt is "the greatest" after winning his third gold of the Games
Bolt celebrates another victory (photo: Getty Images)

Usain Bolt anchored his nation's 4x100 relay team to a third consecutive gold medal, before signing off with the statement "There you go. I am the greatest".

Who could argue with him?

After victories in the 100m and 200m earlier in the week, Bolt was chasing down an unprecedented "triple treble" with three Olympic golds in three successive Olympic Games'. 

There was nothing to choose between the Jamaicans, Americans and Japan in the opening three quarters of the race, until Nickel Ashmeade passed the baton to the great man, in turn storming away to win that ninth gold medal at a canter.

Japan stunned the world when they finished in silver medal position, whilst USA thought they had won bronze through Mike Rodgers, Justin Gatlin, Tyson Gay and Travis Bromell. Whilst Bolt, Ashmeade, Asafa Powell and Yohann Blake celebrated, it conspired that Gatlin had passed the baton to Gay too early on the second changeover, causing USA to be disqualified and rivals Canada promoted to third. USA have appealed against the decision.

Usain "is immortal"

The night belonged to Jamaica oncemore though as Blake tried to persuade Bolt to stay as part of the team for Tokyo 2020, despite the greatest sprinter of all time claiming he would retire after the 2017 World Championships. "Usain needs to be immortal and he is immortal. I will encourage him to come back for 2020."

Meanwhile Bolt was intent on enjoying the moment after another spectacular success. "I'm going to stay up late and have fun. I never knew this would happen when I started out. It's a brilliant feeling. I've pushed myself, it's been a long road. I'm happy but I'm relieved. It's great to be in the history books as one of the greatest. I'm proud of myself." Will there ever be anyone else like him?