Track speed to shutter speed: Bolt just clicks

SCOTT SPITS
Last updated 13:51 10/08/2012

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For Swedish photographer Jimmy Wixtrom, it pays to be recognised by Usain Bolt.

As the world's greatest athlete was completing a slow victory lap at the Olympic Stadium, basking in the glory of becoming the first man to defend both his 100m and 200m Olympic titles, Bolt took every opportunity to play up to the crowd ... and the cameras.

But after being tracked by countless photographers looking for THAT special shot, Bolt happily took up the request from the Swede to borrow his camera and take some photos for himself. After all, it was the world's biggest stage and it was his moment. Why not get a couple of photos for posterity?

Wixtrom had been shooting images of the race from a higher point in the stands and noticed that Bolt was moving quite slowly in his victory lap. He still had time to pounce.

The two have a history, Wixtrom says, dating back to the World Championships in South Korea last year when the Jamaican had helped him out with getting a shot in the midde of a flurry of photographers. He says they've spoken briefly a few times before and freely admits he could be considered "that annoying guy".

"Today I was up in the stands shooting another picture [of the race] with the Olympic flame in front. Then I saw him walking slowly around and I think (sic) maybe if I go down there," Wixtrom explained.

"I was running all over the place and I was just in time.

"I was just screaming 'Bolt, Bolt, Bolt'. I met him a few times before here and asked him if I could take a picture before ... I guess when he saw me, he recognised me and thought 'OK, that's the same guy again'."

The results were some geninuely exclusive photos of the race's aftermath, except they were taken by the star of the show himself. Bolt targeted his focus on Blake, along with dozens of other lenses pointed back his way.

Wixtrom's employers back at home would be happy, the Swede pointed out, now that they are in possession of some unique images that could possibly be labelled ''From The Eyes of Bolt''.

He says the photos are excellent and agrees the Jamaican superstar may have something of an eye for photography.

"It was amazing. The picture was fantastic ... he's the biggest person in the world right now ... doing this (gestering the characteristic 'Lightning Bolt')."

When the Jamaican was later asked about his brief foray into photography, he flashed a characteristic smile. "It always makes for a great picture. So for me it was fun."

-Fairfax Australia

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